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St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce awards business leaders for outstanding contributions

The St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce celebrated and honored business leaders for their work in strengthening St. Johns County’s position as one of the best places to live and work.

The awards were presented to individuals who have made a difference. “All of our award winners have been instrumental and committed to the economic well-being of St. Johns County,” said Kirk Wendland, president of the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce. “We truly appreciate their support of our Chamber, which strives to be the top resource for business growth and vitality in St. Johns County.”

The Chamber has named two of its key awards in memory of two former Chamber leaders. The Gene Morse Ambassador of the Year Award is named in honor of last year’s Ambassador of the Year award winner, Gene Morse, and the Fred Schroeder Economic Development Council (EDC) Member of the Year is named in honor of Fred Schroeder, one of the founders of the St. Johns County EDC.

Marion Richardson of Jacobs, Jacobs & Associates, The Gene Morse Ambassador of the Year Award. Richardson was honored for her enthusiastic participation in the Chamber’s Ambassador Program, which supports the Chamber’s membership department by recruiting new members and increasing the membership base, assisting in the orientation of new members and retention of existing members, and acting as a liaison between the Chamber, general membership, new members and community. Ambassadors also strive to make a difference in the community while enhancing the county’s business exposure.

Jim Browning of The Browning Agency of Ponte Vedra Inc., The Fred Schroeder EDC Member of the Year Award. Browning began his service to the Chamber’s EDC under Schroeder’s leadership and has been passionate about economic development and St. Johns County ever since. This past year, he worked with the Industrial Development Authority, the Airport Authority, the county and the Chamber to create the Governor’s Reception at THE PLAYERS Championship.

David Bearl, First Coast Technical College director of college advancement, Member of the Year Award. Bearl was recognized for his endless support and dedication to the Chamber. He is an active participant at Chamber functions and is always available to assist at Chamber events, serve as a Chamber liaison and attend Chamber board meetings.

Bearl, along with David Cobb and Bruce Hallett, were recognized as outgoing board members. Hallett, along with Bridget Van Landingham, Leslee Keys, Rebecca Taus, Michael Cunningham and Steve Pollack, were commended for their service as the Chamber’s Area Business Council Presidents.

The 2011 Annual Dinner and The Art of Business Awards were sponsored by Flagler Hospital, VyStar Credit Union, Batson-Cook, St. Augustine Record, Stellar, Northrop Grumman, Brooks Rehabilitation, FirstAtlantic Bank, Florida Power & Light Company, Herbie Wiles Insurance, Infinity Global Solutions, LLC, McClure Bloodworth, P.L., Ring Power and RS&H.

More information about the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce is available at www.sjcchamber.com.


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