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Sanvidge keynote speaker at county Chamber’s annual meeting

December 10, 2015
By Todd J. Tranum - President & CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce & Executive Director of the Manufacturers Association of t , Westfield Republican

Kevin Sanvidge, the Administrative Director and Chief Executive Officer with the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency will be the keynote speaker for the Chautauqua county Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting on Friday, Dec. 11. The event will be held at noon at Moon Brook Country Club, Jamestown.

Sanvidge will talk about economic development in Chautauqua County. The CCIDA has been involved in a variety of projects during his 18-month tenure. Formerly with Cliffstar Corporation and Al Tech Specialty Steel, Sanvidge was also a member of the Boards of Directors of Lake Shore Savings Bank, ECR International, and the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce.

The Chamber Annual Meeting will also include presentation of the 2015 Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award to Dr. Susan McNamara, Assistant Professor of Management at Fredonia State University of New York. She teaches Strategic Management, Organization Behavior and Entrepreneurship, and is also the adviser for the Fredonia Enactus team, which has grown substantially to now include students in 19 different majors.

Chamber Board members and officers will be elected for 2016. Nominees for the 2016 officer position are as follows: Chair, Curt Anderson, Small Business Development Center; Vice Chair, Brian Bugaj, Nestle Purina; Secretary, Neil Frederick, Bush Industries; Treasurer, Ann Abdella, Chautauqua County Health Network; Immediate Past Chair, James Pullan, Jr., Jamestown Mattress Company. Board members at large are: Virginia Horvath, State University of New York at Fredonia; Larry Ludemann, DFT Communications; and new members, Matthew Churchill, Water Street Brass; and Emily Reynolds, Cornell Cooperative Extension. The Chair of each Community Chamber Board also serves on the Chautauqua County Chamber Board.

The Chamber Annual Meeting is sponsored by Cummins, Community Bank, DFT Communications, E. E. Austin & Son, Fredonia College Foundation, JAMA/UPMC Hamot, Jamestown Community College, OBSERVER, The Post-Journal, Star Media Group, and Univera Healthcare Southern Tier. The cost for lunch is $18 per person for members or $21 for non-members. To reserve your spaces, please call the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101, or register online at www.chautauquachamber.org/events.

Report shines a light on boosting regional tourism

Many in our region believe in the great potential of Chautauqua County, it is helpful to have professionals from outside the area visit with us and share their expertise and offer us a glimpse at what the future could hold. The new downtown Jamestown urban design plan by AECOM Design & Planning is just such an example. We have been watching with excitement and interest in recent years as plans fall into place for the National Comedy Center. Now, this new report offers a strategic look at other growth that can boost not only Jamestown, but all of Chautauqua County.

While it is focused on the tourism growth potential in Jamestown, this report is careful to note that there are numerous assets in Chautauqua County including Chautauqua Institution, our Lake Erie wine region, and much more, that all stand to benefit from increased tourism and related business. Projects that build up one area of our county will serve the entire region in ways that we have yet to discover.

It is refreshing to have a new set of eyes look at what we currently have and demonstrate in a tangible way that there are opportunities for growth and investment. The AECOM report is careful to note that Downtown Jamestown "cannot rely on growth from new demand generated by employment or population growth." But it also points out that the city can be developed into a destination, featuring a "critical mass of complementary activities that draws existing resident and tourist spending downtown."

AECOM points out that there are exceptional spots available for additional retail, restaurant, and housing developments in Jamestown. Existing buildings can be repurposed to capitalize on the historic nature of our brick structures. At the same time, continued development of the Riverwalk Park system with a focus on creating additional events along the water, will add to the vitality of the community.

We are encouraged not only by the report, but by the sheer numbers of people who turned out to learn more about it. With 180 people on hand for a public meeting at the Robert H. Jackson Center, and more than 60 at a separate developers meeting at the Jamestown Renaissance Center, attendance exceeded expectations. Thank you to the Gebbie Foundation, the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation, the National Comedy Center, and the City of Jamestown, for driving the development of the report and bringing it forth to the community.

We view this strategic report with optimism and are excited about both the potential and creativity outlined for the Downtown Jamestown corridor and the opportunity for spill over economic impact for the entire county. Enhancing both the city and the entire county as a tourist destination is a worthy goal. The potential is all here. We look forward to working with both existing and new businesses that seek to be a part of the Downtown Jamestown growth in the next few years. To read the full report visit www.jamestownupclose.com.

Chamber gift checks make great gifts

Shop Small. Shop Local. Shop-Tauqua! Small Business Saturday has come and gone again, yet the Chamber continues to promote shopping locally during this holiday season. When you buy merchandise that is locally made or sold by local businesses, you are supporting our economy right here in Chautauqua County.

One easy and convenient way to support local businesses is to give Shop-Tauqua Chamber Gift Checks this season. Chamber Gift Checks can be used just like cash at over 80 local businesses for everything from groceries to hardware, to dining in local restaurants. Call the Chamber to order your checks or to learn more: 366-6200 or 484-1101.

 
 
 

 

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