Singer Ken Lavigne is co-hosting the 20th Black Tie Awards for the Duncan Cowichan Chamber of Commerce in 2016.
The announcement was made during the chamber’s annual general meeting last week attended by 48 representatives of 36 member organizations.
Nominations for the Black Tie Awards open Friday, Nov. 27 and the awards will be co-hosted on April 9 at Brentwood College School with Lavigne and Daphne Goode of Shaw Go! Island.
“We are very excited that Mr. Lavigne will co-host the Awards,” said chamber membership Manager Elizabeth Croft. “He and Daphne will provide that special energy and a dash of magic to celebrate our 20th Anniversary and honour excellence at the Awards in 2016.”
In her address during the AGM Chamber President Julie Scurr highlighted the chamber’s accomplishments over the last year.
She said the chamber held 50 events during the year which included; the All Candidates Forum, Business Showcase, an Industry Training Authority presentation and a variety of networking and professional developments events.
“Our Chamber believes that economic development is not only a process, it’s a culture of creating a welcoming environment for business,” says Scurr.
The Duncan Cowichan Chamber also won the BC Chamber Executives Award for Communication and was the Best in Province for Chambers with 200 – 500 members.
The Chamber’s Executive Director Sonja Nagel said Cowichan Regional Visitor Centre (CRVC) served more than 20,000 visitors in 2015, an increase of 11% over 2014, and an increase of 120% compared to 2013 at the previous location.
“The increased numbers indicate that visitors want to engage face-to-face with travel counsellors to learn about key attractions and activities in our area,” she said.
The Chamber expressed special appreciation to several directors who are moving on.
Outgoing Director Corrine Thompson, who held the human resources portfolio, is the manager of the Duncan RBC branch and served on the Chamber Board from 2010 until 2015.
Director Emeritus & Past President Dave Clark was recognized for his work as the Chamber’s Parliamentariann and his ongoing support for special projects.
The membership elected seven directors to the board at the AGM.
They are; Miles Anderson of Outlooks Menswear, Danielle Killam of Hayes Stewart Little & Co., Martin Buck of the Thunderbird Motor Inn, Jason Price of Valley Life Insurance Solutions, Carol Messier of Maple Bay Marina, Penny Lehan of Coleman Fraser Whittome Lehan, and Sebastien Martin of Wedderspoon Organic Inc. and Folki Herbs Inc.
The Directors will elect a new Executive for the organization at the next Board meeting in early December. The chamber also expressed appreciated to Sands Funeral Chapel which hosted the Chamber’s Lunch ‘n Learns throughout the year.
The chamber continues working to make the provincial small business tax exemption for credit unions permanent and encourages BC Assessment to review the classification of winery and cidery production properties.