By LEW Ok. COHN, Inquirer Writer

The Gonzales Chamber of Commerce & Agriculture celebrated Texas Independence Day with a pink, white and blue Lone Star-spangled awards banquet on the JB Wells Expo Middle on Thursday, March 2.

Attendees loved Texas swing music, Texas barbecue and a dwell and silent public sale for Texas-themed objects along with feting the Lifetime Achievement and Group Service Award winners.

Throughout remarks, outgoing Chamber President Carolyn Morrow spoke in regards to the challenges confronted by the Chamber from when she first began on the board in 2020, when COVID-19 triggered shutdowns and occasion cancellations.

“It is a nonprofit and your aim is to boost cash to supply companies and assist. How do you do this in a yr the place you the place you’ll be able to’t depart your own home? Proper?” Morrow requested. “It is fairly difficult however we obtained by way of it.

“We obtained by way of lots of overcoming obstacles after which 2022 was an incredible yr. Wanting over the previous 12 months, we simply actually wish to thanks guys for every part that you’ve got achieved to maintain coming to occasions like this.”

She praised new Chamber government director Melissa Henderson and new tourism coordinator Alise Mullins, whose place is funded by way of a partnership between the Chamber and the town of Gonzales, which Morrow known as “a win for you guys in our neighborhood as a result of it is strategically the fitting factor to do.”

“We have an incredible workers, we have nice board members, new incoming board members with contemporary concepts, and we’re very, very excited, so we’ll proceed to advertise enterprise and advocate for you as members for the Gonzales Chamber of Commerce,” Morrow stated.

Morrow closed her remarks by talking about Gonzales’ function as the place to begin of the Texas Revolution.

“That is the place we stood our floor and we stated we’re not going to surrender simply. We stated ‘Come and take it,’” Morrow stated. “I imagine that very same spirit, that entrepreneurial spirit, that spirit of fortitude and fervour, exists in all of you. It is in our hospitals. It is in our faculty districts. It is in each small enterprise that is making an attempt to succeed. And so I say that collectively, we are going to assist you as your Chamber, however we collectively generally is a fabulous neighborhood. Let’s do it collectively. Let’s come and take it!”

Incoming President Wayne Baker instructed the viewers that “with out ya’ll’s participation and being right here, none of that is attainable.” Baker stated one aim this yr is to proceed engaged on enhancements to the Chamber constructing at 304 Saint Louis after the group moved there in 2022.

“I do not know for those who’ve been by there, nevertheless it’s lots larger than what we had earlier than (within the outdated Gonzales County Jail),” Baker stated. “I’d wish to thank (former government director) Daisy (Scheske Freeman) for all her onerous work that she put into getting us in that constructing, in addition to (former government director) Brad (Cox).”

Like Morrow, Baker believes tourism “is a aim for the Chamber to learn all people on this room.”
“We wish to get as many individuals to Gonzales as we will, and staying in our motels, coming to our occasions. We sit up for working with Major Avenue and simply sort of get all people working collectively to make Gonzales pretty much as good a spot to be as attainable. And I feel working collectively we will do this,” Baker stated.

Retiring board members honored embody Morrow, Cindy Maldonado, Eddie Escobar and Suzanne Zaitz, whereas new incoming administrators Sherri Schellenberg, Trey Lester, Noel Reese, Lawren Kridler and Jeff Natho have been acknowledged. Different board members embody Doug Durham, Naomi Brown, Sherry Hill, Brie Irons, Rafe Jackson, Manny Patel, Donna Trammell, Lisa Goss and Robert Butler.