15 Sep 2014
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Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner

The business organization celebrates at Oakland Community College Orchard Ridge.

Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner Farmington Chamber Honors Members at Annual Dinner

The honored members Thursday night for everything from entrepreneurship to social responsibility.

But that wasn't the only thing the organization had to celebrate during its second annual awards dinner, held at campus. Board president Jerry Ellis said after the Farmington-Farmington Hills Chamber dissolved two years ago, the new chamber "rose from the ashes" thanks to "hard work, perseverance ... and a few nuts" who thought it could work.

"Today's mighty oak is just a nut that held its ground," Ellis said.

The organization is closing in on 500 members, after just two years in business. Chamber director Mary Engelman said, "We're in the green for the first time, and that's an awesome place to be."

Awards given Thursday included:

  • Make a Difference: Ginger Wiechers, owner of , who also runs S.O.U.L., a charity and re-sale shop that helps people in need
  • Community Citizen, recognizing a community-minded Chamber member: Beth Cooke, marketing specialist with
  • Outstanding Chamber Ambassador: Ray Randolph
  • Economic Leadership: Hino Motors
  • Entrepreneur of the Year: Living Essentials (makers of 5 Hour Energy)

Certificates of appreciation were given to for their assistance with Chamber cable programs, Bright House Networks and Diane Cassidy of , who partnered with the chamber for , a fundraising event held during the Downtown Farmington Founders Festival.

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