The Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce held its annual Member Celebration and Awards Ceremony last week, and they honored Coastal Point publisher Susan Lyons with the Chamber’s prestigious Lighthouse Award.
“The Lighthouse Award is the most prestigious award that the Chamber presents. It recognizes a longtime Chamber member that contributes outstanding leadership and devotion to both the Chamber and the local community,” said Chamber President Barbara Howard. “This individual strives to promote the community as a wonderful place to live and work… The Lighthouse Award is viewed as a type of ‘lifetime achievement’ recognition and is selected by the Board of Directors each year.
“A successful person is measured in money, power and status,” Howard continued. “A significant person, however, is measured through the empowerment of others, community-building and generosity of time, talent and money. The Lighthouse Award honors a person of significance in our community.”
Lyons, who was grew up on Cedar Neck Road in Ocean View, is a Maryland-Delaware-D.C. Press Association multi-award winner, was a founder of the Delaware Wave newspaper and later the Coastal Point, of which she is an owner and the publisher. She was named 2008 Chamber Business Partner of the Year and is a member of the Barefoot Gardeners and Beta Sigma Phi sorority. She is also the 2011 inductee into the Indian River High School Hall of Fame.
“She is such a vital asset to our towns, communities and Chamber,” said Howard, who presented Lyons with the award on Oct. 11.
Lyons, who was joined by her family at the ceremony, said the award was “such an honor.”
“For 30 years I’ve been working with the Chamber off and on in many different capacities, and I’ve watched this Chamber really grow,” said Lyons in accepting the award. “When I started working with the Chamber, we were in one room of Superior Realty and they had one employee. So, to see where we’ve come is really amazing. And to see the slate of the board of directors… I know we’re going in the right direction and will continue growing.”
The slate of new Chamber board members was also sworn in on Oct. 11. Nancy Cummings of Beebe Medical Center; Ron Derr of PKS & Company P.A.; Aubré Duncan of Aubré’s Watercolours; Ernie Felici of Creative Resource Group; Rick Hundley of Baja Beach House Grill; Richard Mais of McCabe’s Gourmet Market; and Brian Trout of Cripple Creek Golf & Country Club were sworn in as the 2012 Board of Directors.
The outgoing board members were James Brannon of Atlantic General Hospital, Howard Bunting of Brasure’s Pest Control Inc. and Jennifer Pavik of Vernon Sales Promotions.
For the 2012 Chamber year, the business and community members that will serve as Chamber officers are: Barbara Howard of PNC Bank, president; Kami Banks of Banks Wine & Spirits, president-elect; Anne Powell of the Anne Powell & Jennifer Hughes Team for ResortQuest Real Estate, vice-president; Jennifer Jones of Delaware Center for the Inland Bays, secretary; Tim Haley of the Blue Crab of Bethany Beach, treasurer; and Todd Hickman of NV Homes Coastal Division, immediate past president.
Along with the Lighthouse Award, the Chamber on Oct. 11 also presented a variety of other awards to member businesses. The Freeman Stage at Bayside took home the Community Spirit Award, which is presented to the member business that has demonstrated an exemplary commitment to the community, above and beyond its business contributions throughout the year.
The Bookend Café received the Chamber’s Best in Business Award, which is given to a member business that provides high quality customer service above and beyond industry standards.
Jennifer Pavik received the Chamber’s 2012 Member of the Year Award, which recognizes an individual who has demonstrated the most dedication by their involvement in the Chamber throughout the year.
Donna Duffy of 3E Marketing Solutions received the Inspiring Business Award, given to an individual who actively encourages and perpetuates business innovation, freely shares ideas and opinions regarding business issues and is a catalyst for the future of business.
Anne Powell received the New Member of the Year Award, given to an individual who joined in 2012 and immediately became active in the Chamber.
Terry Mahoney of WMDT won the Chamber’s Arlene M. Hauck Ambassador of the Year Award.
Chamber staff also reviewed the Chamber’s year, noting that the group had held 35 events in the last 12 months, has gained 76 members, and has welcomed 71,000 visitors to the Quiet Resorts in the year to date.
It was the last awards ceremony for outgoing Chamber Executive Director Carrie Subity, who thanked the Chamber members for their love and support.
“I am terribly sad to leave,” she said. “Without your constant support, we wouldn’t be where we are today. I’m so proud to have worked at such an amazing place. Each and every one of you made the last seven and a half years some of the best in my life.”
Todd Hickman thanked Subity for her time and dedication to the Chamber and wished her the very best in her future endeavors.
“As a person, we are in the presence of a truly great individual, thank you,” he told Subity.
For more information on the Chamber, visit www.bethany-fenwick.org.