Past Chamber Chairs Reflect on Centennial

November 09, 2017
The Chamber board formed a Centennial Celebration planning committee two years ago and one great idea was to bring back together as many past chairmen and chairwomen as possible for an event.  The Past Chairs Reception that was held was a festive time for those who were able to attend.  Live music was provided by Jack Carr, and everyone enjoyed the fellowship and talking about Washington County's past and future. 

Of the 39 past chairs still living, 27 attended this Centennial reception.  City of Brenham Mayor Milton Tate and Washington County Judge John Brieden were also present to express appreciation for the service of this group of volunteer leaders, along with current members of the Chamber board, Amanda Stolz, Tammy Jaster and Darren Huckert, plus Chamber staff Jane Hinze, Shae Janner and Page Michel.

The past chairs were asked to share memories from their time leading the Chamber board.  They mentioned bringing important leaders to Brenham for the annual banquets including former Texas Governors Dolph Briscoe and William Clements and former Ambassador to China George H.W. Bush; completing the Welcome to Washington County signs on the highways leading into Brenham; launching the Leadership Washington County program; working alongside the Economic Development Foundation, and more. Their shared memories will be published soon in a "Chamber Centennial" special section of the Banner Press.
Everyone's favorite part of this "100th year" is how there has been a special focus on taking a look back, stopping to reflect, and seeing how much has been accomplished to make this community special.  There is a legacy of leadership that has been passed down from year to year, from volunteer to volunteer.
When asked what else lies ahead, Chamber staff say "Next year when we're one hundred and one, we just want to have fun."
There is a saying that "the Chamber does things that other people think just happen."  And it's true, says current Chamber President Page Michel.  "Some projects don't reveal their impact for years, and sometimes you wonder if all the time spent in meetings will matter.  Every year, the volunteers who meet, plan and then implement ideas deserve a lot of credit for their vision and perseverance." 

(Seated L to R) Bill Neinast, Deanna Alfred, Tamy Metzger, Mary Lou Winkelmann, Susan Cantey, Howard Kruse, Charles Moser, Joe Al Picone, Robert Wright (Standing L to R) Julie Renken, Kurt Podeszwa, Gracie Slattery, Barney Loesch, Cathy Boeker, Hal Moorman, Tee Dippel, Brice Milliorn, Don Voelter, Brett Smith, Charlie Matejowsky, Jeff Ehlert, James Schroeder, Shirley Herring, Kurt Alfred, Jeff Appel, Jay Alexander, Wesley Brinkmeyer.  Not pictured:  Larry Arnie, Becky Bosse, Herbert Faske, Clarence Gaskamp, Clarence Gerke, Gene Herrmann, Liz Hopkins, Kyle Merten, Donny Roberts, Steven Stuckert, Larry Urquhart, Ray Weiss, David Yeager.