Each year, the Somerset-Pulaski Chamber of Commerce closes out the prior year with its annual banquet and awards ceremony. On that night, the Center for Rural Development’s banquet room was overflowing with a host of citizens from our local area.
There were people there from all walks of life. Young and old. People from government. People from the public service arena. People from the business world and people who have already retired from working. It was truly an event for all the people of Somerset and Pulaski County.
While the term ‘commerce’ refers to the activity of buying and selling, the Somerset-Pulaski Chamber of Commerce does much more than just promote the community’s local businesses – which it does extremely well.
The Somerset-Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce is the seventh-largest chamber of commerce in Kentucky, with approximately 900 member businesses. Last year alone, our local Chamber brought in an array well-known statewide speakers to it’s monthly luncheons, which included UK basketball great Kenny Walker, International Bluegrass Museum Director Chris Joslin, and Kentucky Agricultural Commissioner Ryan Quarles.
On top of promoting the local businesses in the area, the Somerset-Pulaski County Chamber offered several training programs to its members. But perhaps one of the local chamber’s strong suits is its many fundraising events like the annual Christmas Parade, the Jack Keeney Memorial Golf Tournament, the Shamrock Shuffle 5K, Operation Beautification, the Lake Cumberland Air Show and the Chamber of Commerce Holiday Auction.
The Chamber’s year-end banquet does celebrate its accomplishments from the past year and praises all who had a part in helping raise money for the many local organizations it supports each year. However, the Chamber of Commerce Banquet is a time to shine a spotlight on the businesses, men, and women who all made an impact on their community.
In the business world, successful entities are usually awarded for their profits or dollars earned. However, the Chamber awards their local businesses based on how they have impacted the local community in a positive way outside realms of profits and losses.
Several local businesses (at various levels of size) were awarded as Chamber Businesses of the Year. Also, individuals were awarded the Distinguished Community Service Award, the Woman in Business Award, the Excellence in Education Award, and the Entrepreneurial Success Story Award.
With Chamber Executive Director Bobby Clue, outgoing Chamber president Tiffany Finley, and incoming president Shawn Daugherty leading the way for our local Chamber of Commerce, the local organization had plenty to celebrate about this year.
The 2023 Somerset-Pulaski Chamber of Commerce Banquet & Awards Ceremony was a great send off to the past year of commerce and goodwill throughout the community.