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Gina Suydam offers Judy Mead a bouquet of flowers in thanks for her 20 years of service as a Wyoming County Commisioner, and decades more as a local business woman.

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STAFF PHOTOS/ROBERT BAKER Jody Place, outreach manager for Penelec, gets an honor from Chamber President Gina Suydam for her company’s 100th year of service to the local business community.

The Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce took time out Thursday to thank its members for a good 2019.

In a breakfast at Stonehedge Country Club, outgoing board chair Bill Hampton reviewed some of the high moments in the year almost completed. That was followed by incoming board chair Tracy Brundage leading those in attendance on some journeys of exploration, which suggested the best was yet to come.

Hampton thanked The Gardens for sponsoring the day’s breakfast.

Among the highlights for the year, Hampton pointed to a revamped Chamber website, he called, “really slick” and said it had yielded 111,000 new direction web searches. But he also talked about Leadership Wyoming which had 40 alumni and an active new class of 15 participants.

He spoke of the business luncheons, Leadercast programs, Google workshop, joining hands with chambers in the Back Mountain and Luzerne County for a ‘Think About Energy’ program, legislative breakfast, and FallFest Mixer which drew over 500 participants.

He also spoke of the second ‘Get Gas”grant of $1 million from Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Financing Authority to help facilitate access for Tunkhannock Borough residents so they can access the Marcellus gas in the region.

He handed the microphone over to Chamber President Gina Suydam, who had some presentations to make.

First she acknowledged Michelle Thomas for her watercolor painting that was given as a thank you to active Chamber members.

She recognized Jody Place, outreach manager for Penelec, on the occasion of her company’s 100th year of service to the local business community.

Suydam also called on outgoing Wyoming County Commissioner Judy Mead for her 20 years of service there as well as decades more as a local businesswoman, leading the charge for a Streetscape project in downtown Tunkhannock 15 years ago as well as her leadership of Fitze’s Department Store and later the Eclectic Heart.

Unlike previous membership appreciation events with PowerPoint presentations on all of the things accomplished, Suydam said she and the board decided to shift gears and actually ask questions with a board member strategically placed at each table to explore areas of growth and how to get there.

A buzz could be heard with engaging questions that had people thinking about where the Chamber should be heading into the New Year.

Suydam introduced Keystone College President Tracy Brundage as the new board chairman for 2020 who kept the conversation going and then harkened back to the Chamber’s revamped website that had a page that shared so many positive things to do during the holidays.

“I wish all of you a wonderful holiday season and a great year ahead,” she said.