A 70-year-long impact and counting

Published 12:51 pm Thursday, January 4, 2018

Though I travel largely in sports circles, I have recently had occasion to cover some events organized by the Farmville Area Chamber of Commerce. This exposure has prompted me to reflect on the impact the chamber has had on the community.

In the course of covering the chamber’s 2017 Holiday House Tour on Dec. 9, I noticed that the event helped bring people together by giving them an opportunity to explore some signature homes in the town, and it helped expand their knowledge of the town’s history as well, broadening their appreciation for the place they call home.

The tour also illustrated how the chamber supports other organizations in the area, as some of the proceeds from the event went to the Farmville Area Habitat for Humanity.

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Chamber Director of Marketing Jennifer Kinne noted that 2017 has been a very successful year for the chamber.

“Farmville is buzzing and thriving with excitement and growth,” she said. “The Farmville Area Chamber of Commerce is the communication center for its members, helping to celebrate their events and activities. We promote tourism and launched four new commercials this year.

She added that the chamber brings the business community together often to offer opportunities for networking and education.

“One thing that we are super proud of is our initiative to support nonprofits,” she said. “Our nonprofit membership has grown this year. We have also begun sharing our profits from fundraisers with local nonprofit members.”

Presently, Brad Watson, of Davenport & Company, chairs the chamber’s board of directors, and he offered some insight into his and the chamber’s objectives.

“As chairman, my goal is for the Farmville Area Chamber to be a relevant and helpful force for our business community,” he said. “Farmville and its surrounding counties really need our local businesses to thrive, not just survive. And we also need more new businesses moving into our area. Employment opportunities will drive everything forward in a positive way, and if the chamber has an opportunity to help business owners and managers in our area create a better bottom line and to hire additional personnel, we will do everything we can to help.”

Clearly the Farmville area is better off due to the impact of the chamber. As its mission statement reads, “Since 1948, the Farmville Area Chamber of Commerce has strived to improve the lives of those living and doing business in our community. Alongside our members, we provide educational initiatives, promote tourism, serve as advocates for local businesses and seek opportunities to aid a diverse and growing population.”

Titus Mohler is sports editor for The Farmville Herald and Farmville Newsmedia LLC. His email address is Titus.Mohler@FarmvilleHerald.com.