By Deb Beddoe Chairman of the Board Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce
January of last year, I predicted 2016 would fly by, and boy did it. As they say, time flies when you are having fun, and 2016 was a year to remember. I had an amazingly great experience serving as your Chairman of the Board. To give you all some insight into the activities of the Chairman, I am taking the opportunity of sharing some of the highlights:
- Started the year with a very focused and energetic Board Retreat at the Omni Rancho Las Palmas in Palm Springs followed up by a very elegant Annual Installation dinner at the Park Hyatt Aviara.
- One of the ideas prompted at the Board Retreat was the pairing of an Ambassador to a new member for the new member’s first few months of membership. Board Member Paula Anderson led a sub-committee to make this happen.
- As an attendee at all four New Member Orientations, it was awesome to see the idea carried through and to later hear the feedback from new members.
- The coffee shops in Carlsbad love me, I met with 19 Chamber members and 17 Board of Director members to get some first-hand feedback about whether their Chamber is fulfilling their expectations. I was able to bring the feedback to the Board Meetings and Executive Board Meetings every month.
- Board member Scott White led a By-Laws sub-committee and thanks to the assistance of Jeff Stoke, we were able to get through the process and get a set of bylaws that reflect our business practice to present to the Board.
- In addition to the Carlsbad State of the City Luncheon, I was able to attend the San Marcos State of the City Luncheon, and Escondido State of the City Breakfast. It is encouraging to know that our fine city is in good company and that there are many collaborative efforts happening between the cities.
- Lunches provided some amazing opportunities to meet with people in our communities who are truly making a difference. I had the honor of lunching with our City Attorney Celia Brewer at our member restaurant Fresco; San Marcos Mayor Jim Desmond at our member restaurant The Crossings; and Councilman Keith Blackburn at an event to celebrate the San Diego Fair.
- Speaking of people in our communities who are making a difference, we met with some of the candidates running for City Council, including Cori Schumacher who will be serving our community this year.
- As a segue into politics, lunches with Chair Elect Ahmed Haque taught me a lot about politics, for which I have very little experience. However, as Chairman of the Board, it is necessary to understand.
- In an effort to stay tuned to our committees, I attended all of the committees at least once this year, with the exception of the Ambassador Committee because their meeting falls on the same morning as our Executive Board meeting. Sorry Ambassadors! And of course, I was a regular attendee at the Ready Carlsbad Business Alliance meetings and symposiums.
- We also introduced one new committee this year called the Quality of Life Committee, led by Board Member Dr. William Meade. We are focused on upcoming events which could significantly impact our community and spending time to understand the impact to business. Look for many significant recommendations from this Committee in 2017.
And finally, I could not let go of some of my regular Chamber activities including, First Friday Breakfast, Sundowners, the Small Business Awards Luncheon, and Glamour, Glitz, Hats & Heels.
I am looking forward to another year as your Chairman of the Board. Thank you for the opportunity and your trust in me to continue to make our members our priority.