Greene County Chamber and Development highlighted successes of 2014 and previewed 2015 at its annual dinner and meeting Jan. 12 at the Elks lodge in Jefferson. About 80 members and guests were present for the evening, which concluded with History Boy Theatre’s two-person production of “The Flight of the Lawn Chair Man.”
Chamber president Ben Yoder introduced guests and served as emcee.
Milestone memberships were noted. Three 35 year members were recognized – Genesis Development, Greene County Medical Center, and Medicap Pharmacy.
Genesis Development was started 42 years ago with a handful of employees and six clients. It has grown to almost 500 staff providing supports to more than 2,000 persons with disabilities across Iowa. Genesis’ home site is in Jefferson, but it also has centers in Boone, Storm Lake, Winterset, Belle Plaine, Indianola, Waukee, Grinnell, Toledo, Perry and Adel. Linda Redfern (pictured, right) accepted a plaque from Yoder on behalf of Genesis Development.
Greene County Medical Center has been an active participant in many Chamber-sponsored events over the years, as well as supporting the schools and youth programs around the county. The medical center is currently undertaking a large expansion and renovation project to enhance health care services for the communities of Greene County and the surrounding area. Medical Center CEO Carl Behne accepted the membership plaque.
Bill Monroe and two Carroll Medicap pharmacists purchased the franchise in 2000, and The Dispensary in Jefferson was also purchased and merged into the Medicap location. An expansion and remodel doubled the store’s space in 2010. Monroe accepted the membership plaque.
Fareway opened its Jefferson store in 1988 and joined the Chamber the next year. The first location was on N. Chestnut St across from city hall. The newer store on N. Elm was opened in 2013. The plaque recognizing 25 years of membership in the Chamber was accepted by meat manager Al Jacobs, who has been at the Jefferson Fareway store since it opened.
Other membership milestones recognized included 20 year members Clark Heating & Plumbing, Dr James Teusch DDS, State Farm Insurance and Subway; 15 year member Kingsgate Insurance; 10 year members Syngenta Seeds, Greene County Fair Association, Heaven’s Best, Jefferson Veterinary Clinic and Region XII Council of Governments; and five years members Bett & Bev’s Barbecue, Greene Bean Coffee, Greene County Extension and PAWS.
Chairs of the various Chamber committees reported their activities. Bret Durbin of the business promotions committee introduced a promotion that will include monthly drawings for Chamber Checks, with purchases at participating businesses being necessary to be included in the drawing. Angie Pedersen is chair of the tourism committee and talked about the new Welcome Center. Toni Linberg chairs the events committee and the Bell Tower Festival. She introduced the theme, Bell Tower Big Top. Many people at the meeting, including Yoder, wore red or green dots on their faces as a salute to Big Top clowns.
Omega Sang, chair of the organization/membership committee, led members through the new membership structure. Membership dues are no longer calculated based on the number of employees at a business. A tiered system has been devised, with a suggested membership level based on past participation in Chamber-sponsored events and the Bell Tower Festival. Members who were not at the meeting will receive their packets in the mail very soon.
Ken Paxton, executive director of Greene County Development Corporation, gave a brief summary of GCDC activities and Home Base Iowa. He said he has been invited to introduce Gov Terry Branstad at his inauguration later this week, and that he expects an announcement soon of another large employer coming to Greene County.
The Above and Beyond the Call (ABC) volunteer award was presented to Diane Wise by Don Orris, last year’s recipient. See the related post in GreeneCountyNewsOnline.