by Danny Wade
The annual Humboldt Chamber of Commerce banquet was a big hit last Thursday evening. Executive Director Amanda Love and Events Coordinator Beth Culpepper once again put together a wonderful event.
Humboldt Chamber President Ben Sinclair got things started, welcoming everyone for attending the banquet, held in the Humboldt Medical Center conference room, which was packed full of chamber members. Sinclair then opened up the buffet line and guests made their way from station to station.
After dinner, Love took to the podium for the second stage of the evening—trivia. Trivia answer sheets were placed at each table where groups of chamber members teamed up against each other. There were three rounds of trivia with each question displayed on the big screen. A timer ran after each question. After each round, trivia sheets were collected. Love then showed the answers on screen.
At the end of the game, there was a tie, so the game went to sudden death. These questions were much harder than the other three rounds.
In the end, Team Venue had bested all the rest and walked away with a nice prize package filled with all types of goodies.
After the winners were announced, Love offered a brief summary of the state of the chamber and the city. She noted the new industries locating in Humboldt as well as new retail stores, banks and restaurants. Humboldt has been on the move up and that trend does not seem to be slowing anytime soon.
The final segment of the program was announcing the chamber awards. Weeks prior to the banquet, chamber members voted online for their favorites. There were eight categories. Outside entities were brought in to judge all of the category entries.
Categories, winners and nominees are:
•Administrative Professional winner is Maryanne Shaver – The Church At Sugar Creek. Other nominees include Gabrielle Frase – Manpower, John Blankenship – Humboldt Public Library, Marquita Patterson – city of Humboldt, Kelly Walker – Tyson Foods, Sydney Lopiccolo – formerly of the Humboldt Chamber, Celia Callahan – Cadence Bank, Dr. Janice Epperson – Humboldt City Schools, Dustin Twyman – 1Tennessee and Cindy Love – Humboldt City Schools.
•Citizen Impact winner is Jocelyn Bundy, director of Helping Hand. Those nominated are Shane Lynch, Marquita Patterson, Scott Keena, Michael Longmire, Gladys
Robinson, Barry Reed, Leon McNeal, Peter Noll and Marvin Sikes.
•Distinguished Educator award went to Randy Prince – advanced manufacturing technology teacher at Humboldt High School. Nominees were Ashley Niven – children’s librarian Humboldt Public Library, Laura Giles – Laura Giles Art Studio, April Burge – Humboldt 8th grade science teacher, Gladys Robinson – Boys & Girls Club of Humboldt, Kelly Vonner – 9th-12th algebra and pre-calculus at HHS, April Henley – 5th Grade at East Elementary,
Tammy Turner – PDS (daycare), Debbie Sheehan – principal at East Elementary, Damarius Person – social worker at Humboldt Jr./Sr. High School and Katie Kulow
– formerly of Humboldt City Schools.
•Small Business Excellence award went to The Kandy Bank. Businesses nominated included Express Employment Professionals, Magnolia Manor and Chapel, Hive Beauty Collective, Dynamix Physical Therapy, Helping Hand of Humboldt, Southern Health and Wellness, Crown Winery, State Farm – Randy Terry, City Gift Company, Bonnie’s School of Dance, Milano’s Pizza and Pasta, JDog Junk
Removal, Alternative Choice Counseling, Lashlee-Rich Building Materials and Humboldt Chronicle.
•Large Business Excellence winner was HCI Supply. Others nominated were Waste Management, Humboldt Plaza 3, Express Employment Professionals, Humboldt Utilities, Gibson County
Publishing, BR Supply, Jackson Clinic, Sonic, Security Bank Humboldt Branch, Manpower Milan, McDonalds, AirMD and WNBJ
•Small Industrial Business Excellence winner is Cloud Machine Tool & Fabrication. Meales Metals was the other nominee.
•Large Industrial Business Excellence award went to winner Chicago Metallic. Local industries also nominated were Tyson Foods, WestRock, FedEx, Dana Corp, Bongards Creameries and Reinhausen Manufacturing
•Community Partner award was presented to WNBJ-39.
•WTSF Volunteer of The Year was Janice Shelton.
Love closed out the banquet and thanked everyone for attending. Even though the event was over, many people decided to hang out and chat with friends.