A message from Executive Director, Ruth Ann Hacking.
As with so many organizations, this past year created both new challenges and new opportunities for the Cohase Chamber.
I joined the Chamber as Executive Director in the first week of March, and instead of going out to visit members and get to know all of you better, as I had planned, I instead sat down, at home, to sort through the ever-increasing pile of COVID-19 resources for businesses. I hope some of that information made it a little bit easier for you to navigate the pandemic, and I remain available to help answer questions and direct you to additional resources.
In the second half of the year, we were fortunate to be able to hold a few of our most popular events, including the Annual Garden Tour, where we hosted over 130 visitors -- our largest tour to date. Many of you also joined us for our first Virtual Member Forum and the Virtual Economic Summit. The important discussions from those events will shape our ongoing efforts with workforce development and economic development in the region.
Although the pandemic limited our events and our ability to come together as much as we would have liked, the board of directors and I used the extra time that afforded us to strengthen the foundations of the Chamber to better serve our members and the community. First, we learned how to use Zoom! Then we met regularly to establish new policies and procedures and recruit new directors. We revised our bylaws to better align with how the organization is run. We also launched a new website with better membership tools and room to expand our marketing and outreach to the community. We are especially excited about our new Online Business Directory that is helping to connect residents and visitors alike to local business.
And on that note, I would like to take a moment to thank all of the organizations who renewed their Chamber memberships at the end of the year. I know this has been a particularly hard year, and I was heartened to see nearly everyone joining us for another year. Together, we can continue to support local business and the economy through this difficult time.