As Angie Miller-Quinlan heads into her first full year as executive director of the Houston Area Chamber of Commerce, she’ll do so with a focus on involvement.
“I need members to get involved, Miller-Quinlan said. “If they want things to get done they’ve got to get involved.”
Miller-Quinlan – who became the organization’s director in August – works with a board of directors that includes four new members and four returning members.
“My first five months has been great,” she said. “I’ve had a lot of cooperation from the board, and they really back me. They’re letting me use my own discretion a lot; that shows they trust me, and that’s good.
“And I’ve heard a lot of positive comments from the public. I was raised here and I know a lot of people, and I think that helps.”
In addition to businesses, Miller-Quinlan would like to see more individuals become chamber members.
“I don’t think people realize that it’s not just businesses that can join,” she said. “I think it’s important for more individuals to join and get involved.”
The chamber’s long-standing mission statement is “The Houston Area Chamber of Commerce is a proud organization that is working hard to promote Houston and our local economy. All the promotions and activities of the chamber are based on the premise that it cares about the community, individuals and businesses.”
“We do need more people to get involved,” Miller-Quinlan said, “but I want to stress that the main thing isn’t what people can do for the chamber, it’s what the chamber can do for people.”
The chamber’s 2017 schedule kicks of with its annual banquet, Saturday, Jan. 14, in the community building at the fairgrounds. The event’s theme is “Houston on the red carpet,” and guests are encouraged to attend dressed as a movie star. Tickets are $20 apiece.
Three indoor yard sales are scheduled, and a downtown “Pumpkin Festival” in the fall. The Carson and Barnes Circus will return in May, and Miller-Quinlan is also working toward ironing out details on a couple of very big events.
“This is going to be a big year for us,” she said. “We’re working hard to make a lot of things better.”
Miller-Quinlan can usually be found in her office from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.
“I have an open door policy and I would love for people to come in and give me their ideas,” she said. “I really want more people to get involved. Nine people can’t do it.”
For more information about membership, scheduled events or getting involved with the chamber, call Miller-Quinlan at 417-967-2220.
•Jan. 14: Annual banquet
•Feb. 4: Inside yard sale
•March 18: Spring bazaar
•April 9-10: gun show
•May 6: Inside yard sale
•May 18: Carson and Barnes Circus
•June 29-30, July 1: Old Settlers Reunion (including concert and fireworks show)
•Sept. 22: Pumpkin Festival
•Oct. 7: Inside yard sale
•Nov. 4: Holiday bazaar
•Nov. 25: Taste of Christmas
•Dec. 8: Christmas tree lighting
•Dec. 9: Christmas parade (Christmas songs theme)
*dates subject to change
•Direct sales or crafter: $50
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
•President/treasurer: Crystal Stice (Landmark Bank)
•First vice president: Bruce Scheets (Bruce Scheets Auctions)
•Second vice president: John Thomas (CableAmerica)
•Secretary: Lori Moncrief (Mitchell Insurance)
•Other board members: Jennifer Bernard (Boiling Springs Resort), Bobby Dixon (Durham Co.), Richard Steckler (Edward Jones Investments), Russ Stigall (pastor, Houston First Baptist Church), Kim Stipanovich (Paws N Claws)
•Ex-officio: Gayla Bratton (Infinite Entertainment)
•Executive director: Angie Miller-Quinlan