December 17, 2018
By: Larry McHugh
The holiday season is in full swing in Middlesex County, but the chamber calendar continues to be packed with events and activities.
The week kicks off on Monday with the latest installment of our annual Middlesex County Real Estate Holiday Gathering at Luce Restaurant in Middletown. Our member realtors and other chamber member professionals who support the real estate industry will get together for holiday networking and a great spread of food. The event is sponsored by our friends at ServPro of Middletown and New Britain. The Real Estate Council, under the leadership of co-chairs Nancy Currlin and Juliet Cavanaugh, does great work throughout the year in support of our member realtors. The Real Estate Council is also once again sponsoring a toy drive so we ask that attendees of the gathering bring an unwrapped toy in support of this important cause.
The final two chamber division meetings of 2018 are scheduled for Tuesday and Thursday of this week in Westbrook and in East Haddam. The Westbrook Division will meet at the Captain Stannard House on Tuesday, and the East Haddam & Haddam Division will meet on Thursday at the brand new Town of East Haddam Municipal Office Complex in Moodus. I want to once again thank all of our division chairs and other supporters for an outstanding 2018. Our divisions will continue to be a critical piece of the chamber infrastructure in 2019 and beyond.
This busy week is headlined by Wednesday’s Member Breakfast Meeting featuring Gov. Dannel P. Malloy at the Red Lion Hotel in Cromwell. Gov. Malloy has appeared at our December Member Breakfast Meeting in every year of his administration, as have all of our sitting governors, going back to the administration of Governor William A. O’Neill in the 1980’s. We expect a large crowd of businesspeople, public officials and other chamber supporters for the 2018 version of our annual Governor’s Breakfast. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has dedicated eight years of his life to this state and he deserves our respect and appreciation. We look forward to his remarks on Wednesday morning. This event, sponsored once again by Eversource, will begin with networking at 7 a.m., breakfast buffet at 7:30 a.m., and meeting program 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. To register online, please visit www.middlesexchamber.com. Immediately following this great chamber Member Breakfast Meeting with the governor, Eversource will also sponsor an important event titled “Is Your Business and Community Resilient to Serious Incidents or Disasters?” Speakers will stress the importance of developing an Emergency Preparedness and Business Continuity Plan, and will provide some important information on the local preparedness infrastructure in Middlesex County. Economic resilience in Middlesex County is very important as it protects local jobs and tax base and gives a business a better chance for survival after a disruption. We hope to have a good crowd for this very important discussion after the Governor’s Breakfast on Wednesday morning.
Following the Member Breakfast Meeting with the governor, I will head to a meeting of the Connecticut Employment and Training Commission in Farmington, and the workforce development theme continues on Thursday morning when I will travel to New Haven for the final Workforce Alliance Executive Committee meeting of 2018. Both of these meetings will continue important discussions on the development of an effective and comprehensive workforce pipeline in our state. The chamber will continue to a bridge between job seekers and employers in 2019 and beyond.
A busy Thursday continues with a meeting of the chamber’s Board of Directors from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at The Gelston House in East Haddam. The chamber’s board is a dynamic group of businesspeople that represents every corner of our region and every industry sector in our economy. This December Board of Directors’ meeting is sponsored by Anthony Assante and his firm Egidio Assante Wealth Management on an annual basis. Anthony is a Past Chairman, Executive Committee member, and longtime supporter of our chamber. I thank him personally and on behalf of the chamber for sponsoring this board luncheon once again. We look forward to a great meeting.
While we expect a quiet week of organizing and planning, the chamber office will be open next week, the final week of 2018. If you are downtown shopping or visiting a local restaurant, please stop in and say hello to members of the chamber team.
Before closing, I ask that everyone please consider using a local Middlesex County business for their shopping needs this holiday season. We are blessed with a wonderful business community here in our region, and I am proud that the many businesspeople we work with on a daily basis are not only concerned with operating a successful business, but with the health and well-being of our community and all of our residents.
Finally, I want to acknowledge Middletown Public Health Manager Sal Nesci who is retiring from city service in the coming weeks. Sal has been a longtime civil servant and a constructive partner for the business community throughout his career. He was instrumental in the creation of the chamber’s ServSafe program and always did his best to assist businesses with compliance of local health codes, so that they were able to open on schedule, and become an integral part of the local economy. I wish Sal nothing but the best in all of his future endeavors, and thank him for his service and professionalism.
Have a great week, Middlesex County. I look forward to sharing additional holiday thoughts next week