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News & Press: Chair's Column

February 2017 Chair's Column

Wednesday, February 8, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Kelly McLendon
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After wrapping up two consecutive days of successful GEDA events in Atlanta, I have many people to thank and a couple of folks to congratulate.

First of all, thanks to GEDA President Kevin Shea, Georgia's newest CEcD (congrats!), and GEDA Manager of Membership Services Kelly McLendon for all their hard work to plan and execute back-to-back membership events in a two-day period (and thanks to GEDA Marketing & Communications Chair John Scott for taking pictures).  I've had a chance to see "behind the curtain" what all goes into making our events happen, and Kevin and Kelly work tirelessly.

Thank you to GEDA's First Vice Chair Missy Kendrick for securing a dynamic speaker, Jason Broadwater, for our February luncheon.  We kicked off the year with a fantastic luncheon program and a very strong turnout.

Thanks to Ralph Forbes and Jason Chambless with Thomas & Hutton (T&H) for sponsoring our February luncheon.  T&H has been a long-standing sponsor of GEDA and truly desires to be a partner in the communities where they work.

Thank you to the GEDA Young Professionals (YP) Committee Chair Meghan Duke for helping highlight and engage our young professionals this year.  Congratulations to Dr. Ilka McConnell with Athens Technical College for being selected the February YP Spotlight, and thanks to Ryan Moore with the Athens-Clarke County Economic Development Department for sponsoring the YP Topgolf event.

Thanks to Jon Pannell with Gray, Pannell & Woodward for sponsoring our Legislative Leadership Dinner on Monday evening, and thank you Al Nash, GEDA Public Policy Chair, and Jim Finch, GEDA Legislative Monitor, for helping us get the right folks at the dinner.  The GEDA Executive Committee hosted a dinner for some of our key legislators and thanked them for helping us as we try to continue to create jobs and investments in our communities, regions, and state.

Thank you Dan McRae with Seyfarth Shaw for sponsoring our Legislative Drop-In Breakfast at the Capitol, and thanks to Young Professionals Meghan Duke of the City of West Point, Trent Williamson and Bob Kosek with the Metro Atlanta Chamber, Jade Morey with the Houston County Development Authority, Keith Barclift with the Northwest Georgia JDA, and Daniel Dobbins with the city of Hawkinsville (a new GEDA member) for delivering GEDA-branded mementos to the legislators in advance of the breakfast.

Thanks to Jessica Hood, GEDA Sponsorship Chair, for helping secure three sponsors for a two-day period.  We couldn't have the high-quality events we have without our sponsors, and Jessica and her sponsorship sidekick, Ashley Morris with GDEcD, are working hard to secure sponsors for our events this year.

Finally, I want to thank you, the members, for #1:  reading this article to the finish (I know it's long), and #2:  continuing to support GEDA by being a member.  I hope you will be able to join us often at events this year.

I look forward to seeing you next month at GEDA's Small Business Rock Star Awards Luncheon on Monday, March 13th!

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