Chamber introduces new president at annual dinner

Published 9:00 am Saturday, September 21, 2019

The Greater Valley Area Chamber of Commerce held its annual membership meeting on Thursday night at King Auto Corner, capping a busy year.

The meeting was an opportunity for outgoing GVACC Board President Bill Gladden to talk about his time serving the chamber and for incoming president Greg Nichols to look ahead at what’s to come.

Gladden said the chamber serves the community by doing what’s best all businesses it represents, regardless of whether it’s in Alabama or Georgia.

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“We are one of a handful of organizations that can actually operate across the state line. As the Valley Area Chamber of Commerce, we support all four cities in the area. In my day to day life, I pay little attention to the state line,” Gladden said. “This, of course, is how we all live around here. I tell you Montgomery and Atlanta know exactly where the state line is. They don’t understand we are one community that just happens to cross the state line.”

Gladden said he enjoyed his two years as chamber president, and he felt the chamber was in good shape as Nichols takes over.

“I hope I have made a difference. I have had a great staff and a wonderful board to work with, which has made the job much easier,” Gladden said.

Nichols said when he first joined the chamber, he had little idea of everything the chamber does in the community, but he’s learned quickly and plans to continue that work.

“I have learned that the chamber goes out and supports the community through promoting growth and promoting tourism and supporting the businesses in the community,” Nichols said.

He said he’s looking forward to being the chamber president.

“Anything we can do to help grow this area, we want to see that happen, and we can’t do that without all of you as members and without the board,” Nichols said.

The chamber also handed out awards at Thursday’s meeting.

The restaurant of the year was Milanos Grille, the small business of the year was Chambley’s, the industry business of the year was WestRock, the emerging business of the year was Cracker Jack’s Seafood Bar & Grill, the retail business of the year was Givorns Foods and the community mover and shaper was Chris Busby of the Chambers County Development Authority.

The business of the year was Brumfield Electrical and Communications Inc.