As we enter the holiday season, I think about all the things that I am grateful for. I have a wonderful family and good friends, a great job, good health, a home. I’m never hungry. As I reflect on the things and people that make my life good, I also think about all those people that are not so lucky. There are still so many that are unemployed, trying to make ends meet as we slowly recover from a deep recession. There are those kids that, through circumstances that they did not cause, are lost and troubled. There are those that are suffering with bad health, difficult home lives, and tough economic times; there are those that are hungry and not sure where that next meal is coming from.
Giving thanks, giving back and helping the less fortunate is at the core of what the holidays really mean. A society that is going to succeed and be whole is one where people care about each other. I believe that over the years, the business community in Irwindale has shown that it is a caring and compassionate one. The past has shown that this diverse economy that includes some of the largest companies in the country and many small to medium sized businesses have gone above and beyond in their generosity to those that are less fortunate.
There are many organizations in the Irwindale region that serve so many in need and will be part of our “Spirit of Giving”. Many businesses and their employees will be looking to see what they can do to help and be part of that spirit. This issue of “Insights” provides a list of the many non-profit organizations that serve a wide variety of individuals and causes and they will be looking for donations both monetary and in-kind. We encourage everyone to take a moment and see where they can do something that will make a difference in the life of someone that may not be in a good place.
I also want to use this moment to say thank you. I started this job in mid February and it has proven to be a very rewarding one primarily because of the wonderful people that are part of this thriving chamber. First and foremost, the chamber’s board of directors are engaged and dedicated to this chamber. They are a great group to work with, are dynamic, very supportive and I consider them great partners in our continuing quest to be a great and relevant chamber. I also have a fabulous team in the office. Veronica Orosco has been with the organization for about thirteen years. Her responsibilities include managing the office, some accounting functions, managing the membership database, the monthly newsletter and weekly e-blasts. Love Larimore has been with the organization for about 18 months and is our Event Manager and her responsibilities include managing all of our events, managing the committees and growing the membership through the development of new programs and services. They have made my job easier and have made it a pleasure to come to work each day. I also work with some of the best volunteers. Our Business Ambassadors, the Environmental Committee, the Golf Tournament Committee, the newly formed HR Roundtable and Small Business Roundtable team and everyone that has participated at some level have proven that this is one of the best local chambers in the region. The chamber of commerce industry is a people industry and we have some of the best people serving the organization.
I am saying thank you to all of you because you have made a difference in my life by your enthusiasm, your dedication, your hard work and your commitment to an organization that works to build a strong local economy and vibrant community. Thank you for making a difference in so many lives.