The Yadkin County Chamber of Commerce held its 24th Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet on Jan. 22.
Marty Driver, board chair, led the meeting and took some time to share the major events that happened to Yadkin County in 2012. Among those events was the groundbreaking for the jail addition, Lydall’s upgrade to a Q1 rating with Ford Motor Companies, the arrival of Sheetz, the county’s venture with Elkin on the New Generations Grant, the possibility of an Agricultural Center and the arrival of B&G Foods.
One particular chamber business member that stood out in 2012 was Miss Jenny’s Pickles. While the business is not based in Yadkin County, the owner, Jenny Fulton, is a resident here and she’s seen her business grown from a two person operation working out of Fulton’s church and later Winston Lake YMCA to a international sensation.
Fulton took the audience on a journey of Miss Jenny’s Pickles from its small beginnings to its large and exciting future, announcing that the company will soon be featured on network television in a reality show.
Next, Driver led the audience through the chamber’s annual awards. The first award was for the chamber’s small business of the year. H&M Collision Repair was honored with the award. The company opened in downtown Yadkinville on March 15 and has since grown to include Enterprise rental car services.
The “Let Your Life Speak” award is given for to an individual who demonstrates exceptional community service. This year the award went to Gary York, the CEO of Yadkin Valley Broadcasting and WIFM and former owner of Neighbors Stores gas stations.
York was not able to attend the event to accept his award.
The Yadkin County Farmer of the Year award was presented by CMS Insurance representative Grady Shore. This award is given to a Yadkin County farmer who demonstrates community involvement, sustainability, environmental awareness and a willingness to share their knowledge with others. This year’s award was given to Loyd Bryant, owner of Loyd Ray Farms.
Bryant operates a hog farm that houses nearly 9,000 hogs on 154 acres. Bryant’s farm is a part of a huge sustainability effort by a waste-to-fuel system that uses manure to generate electricity for the farm, thereby reducing emissions from the waste, improving the health of the hogs and creating fertilizer to grow corn, wheat and beans.
The final award of the evening was the Duke Energy Citizenship and Service Award presented by Duke Energy representative Jimmy Flythe.This award is presented to individuals who groups who make a difference in their community or workplace by using their time, talents and compassion to positively impact the lives of others.
This year the award was given to Thomas Wooten, a retired educator and school principal who has served in over 15 volunteer organizations, served 12 years as a county commissioner and as a member on several boards and committees in Yadkin County.
Mark Diachenko took the stage next to share the chamber’s changes to the board. Steve Hodge was named the 2013 chair, Jim Drum was named the vice-chair, and Eddie Norman, David Nance, Dr. Stewart Hobbs and Sam Williams were appointed to board seats on the board of directors.
The evening drew to a close with a statement from Hodge who thanked Mart Driver for the hard work and service she dedicated to the chamber in 2012. Hodge presented Driver with a gavel and plaque in appreciation for her service and share with the audience that Yadkin County had a big year ahead of it.
Reach Lindsay Craven at 679-2341 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.