WILLIAMSON – The Tug Valley Chamber of Commerce (TVCC) held a very productive meeting on Monday and discussed ways to increase membership and attendance for the organization.
The session was held at El Sazon restaurant in Williamson where 16 persons attended the regular luncheon meeting.
TVCC Director Natalie Young Taylor has suggested moving the regular monthly meetings around to different locations for 2016. The meetings have been rotated around in about three different restaurant locations the last couple of years.
Taylor had a tentative schedule for the coming year where the meetings will be held at other locations such as the Mingo County Redevelopment Authority, Tug Valley ARH, Tug Valley Inn, Williamson Memorial Hospital and other chamber businesses. Members are encouraged to RSVP each meeting so the organization can get a good estimate on how many will be attending the monthly meetings.
Current TVCC President Leigh Ann Ray said the chamber needed to “redefine its roll.” She stated that in the past the organization leaned more toward economic development, but that role has changed the past few years.
Both Taylor and Ray said that they hope to visit businesses in the area to encourage them to join or re-join the chamber.
Taylor said there were several offices in Williamson such as attorneys and physicians that were not members. It was also suggested that the TVCC branch out into outlying areas such as Kermit, Delbarton, Matewan, Gilbert and across the Tug River into Pike County for new members.
Ray also said the TVCC would start a “Business of the Month.” A sign will be displayed in the windows of those chosen each month.
The chamber also voted to send a letter to various elected officials in support of Laurel Lake, which lost funding this past week. The motion was unanimous.
Taylor said that the chamber sold 260 Dingess Tunnel collector editions Christmas ornaments, more than 150 more than the Coal House ornament that was purchased last year.
Adam Warren told the TVCC that he and local historian Bill Richardson would be appearing on the American Heroes Channel TV show “Hatfields & McCoys Blood Feuds,” on January 20.
Ray also announced that the Cause for Paws 5-K and 10-K race will be held February 27. All proceeds go to the local Save Our Strays (SOS) group, the only no-kill shelter for animals in the county.
The annual “Girl’s Night Out,” which was a huge event in the past, will be held on April 1 this year at the Williamson Fieldhouse.
Mayor Robert Carlton was also in attendance at the meeting and reminded everyone about the upcoming Job and Career Fair that will be held at the Williamson Fieldhouse on Jan. 21 from 10 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
The next meeting for the TVCC will be held Monday, Feb. 8, at the Steak House and the new president of Southern W.Va. Community and Technical College will be the guest speaker.
(Kyle Lovern is the Managing Editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at [email protected] or at 304-235-4242, ext. 2277 or on Twitter @KyleLovern.)