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An annual report and eye to the future

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Posted by: Bernie Dagenais on Tuesday, February 5, 2019 at 2:00:00 pm

The Economic Forecast Breakfast and Annual Meetings of The Main Line Chamber of Commerce and The Main Line Chamber Foundation last week were an opportunity to highlight our work connecting members with business, leadership development and talent. I’m providing a few highlights relating to the strength of our economy, the state of Chamber and Foundation, and the people who make it all work.

During our keynote interview with Keystone Research Center economist Mark Price, an image emerged of a nation that will continue to struggle to fill jobs while facing threats from global trade and economic contraction in China. In the wake of the Federal Reserve Bank’s announcements that it would ease off on interest rate increases for now, Price predicted we would not see a recession this year or next. Even as experience tells us that economies rise and fall as part of an inevitable cycle, and that our current period of growth won’t last forever, it would be great if he turns out to be right about the next two years.

The more than 200 attendees at the Desmond Conference Center/Doubletree learned that the state of the Chamber and Foundation are strong, turning intentionally small profits for both organizations as we continue to invest in programs, events and, in the case of the Foundation, an expected $50,000 in scholarships for volunteer emergency fire and medical responders this year.

During the annual meeting portion of the event, we welcomed five new board members: Mary Pat Kessler of Sabre Systems, Donna Stilwell of Brinker Simpson, Paul Rovner of The Haverford Trust Co., Brandie Nemchenko of Experience Chiropractic and Jude Arijaje of Minuteman Press. We thank these individuals, who together bolster the small business depth on the board of directors.

Some of the more poignant words from the event came from Chairwoman Kim Landry.  “We’ve got your back” were the words she said from the podium at our annual meeting last week. Kim was referencing the team of the Chamber and how everyone treats each other in challenging times, but she could as easily have been talking about how the volunteers and staff feel about members.

Collectively, the Chamber’s team of ten has had deaths in the family, including two parents, over the past year. We welcomed a new Chamber baby, and the maternity leave that came along with her. There have been injuries and illnesses. Each time, team members jumped in to ensure the Chamber’s success.

It’s important to celebrate our success and I’m proud of the work we have done together, but we are focused on the future during our 98th year in existence. We are focused on you, our members. 

To read the entire issue of the Main Line Business Monthly please click here

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