Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce Presents 2019 Annual Award Winners

FAIRHOPE, Ala. – The Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 96th Annual Awards Ceremony at the Grand Hotel Golf Resort and Spa Thursday, February 6, 2020. 

2019 Eastern Shore Annual Award Winners

Small Business of the Year – Home Boss Inspections
Community Leader – Michelle Murrill, Southern View media
Non-Profit of the Year – Anchor Cross Cancer Foundation
Service Award – Nancy Grace, Century Bank
Ambassador of the Year – Steven Walling, Coldwell Banker – Reehl Properties
Young Professional of the Year – Kaitlyn LeBlanc, Edward Jones


Small Business of the Year – Home Boss Inspections

In just three years, Home Boss Inspections has experienced tremendous growth. The company started as one person, and now boasts the boss himself and five additional team members. Not only are professionalism and integrity pillars of their business model, but so is giving back to the community that helped make them successful.  They support many local charities, volunteering their time and committing to various Chamber events.  They also offer a construction and building inspector apprenticeship program for high school students as well as those already in the workforce.  

The Small Business of the Year Award was presented by Trustmark Bank.


Non-Profit of the Year – Anchor Cross Cancer Foundation

Anchor Cross Cancer Foundation helps those who are in what is most likely the darkest time in their lives.  Cancer can be a financially devastating disease, and this foundation provides funding for everything from life-saving treatments to purchasing groceries.  100% of donations support their mission to fight cancer and better patients’ lives in our community.  Anchor Cross Cancer Foundation provides more than $80,000 of assistance to approximately 100 patients undergoing cancer treatment in Baldwin and Mobile Counties. To those patients, more time with their loved ones is invaluable. 

The Non-Profit of the Year Award is presented by The Grand Hotel Golf Resort & Spa.

Community Leader – Michelle Murrill, Southern View Media

Michelle Murrill with Southern View Media isinvolved in the professional community, the non-profit community and the Chamber community.  Non-profit involvement is a mission of her business model as she encourages her team to volunteer and use their talents to provide services some foundations would not be able to afford.  Trees for Hope, the American Cancer Society and Widowed Persons Services are among the groups her company helps with free or discounted services.  She recently accepted a board position with the American Autism Center and has served as co-president of the Woman’s Business Alliance. With her team, she puts on the Eastern Shore Business Expo each year.

The Community Leader Award is presented by Coastal Alabama Community College.


Service Award – Nancy Grace, Century Bank 

Nancy Grace with Century Bank gives her time and talents to the Chamber in many capacities.  She’s been an Ambassador for the Chamber, served on various committees and even rolled t-shirts for the Jubilee Festival.  She is always willing to help in the community, going above and beyond to help in any way.  She’s described as conscientious, kind and professional. She is well respected by her colleagues in the banking industry and has an unprecedented dedication to her clients.  Nancy Grace also volunteers on the Annual Awards Ceremony Committee. 

The Service Award was presented by Baldwin EMC.


Ambassador of the Year – Steven Walling, Coldwell Banker – Reehl Properties 

Steven Walling is kind and an inspiration to everyone he works with.  You can count on him to be at every event he can possibly attend with a smile and a great attitude. Whether it is loading Young Professionals supplies or holding the ribbon for a photo op, he is eager to help in every way.  Steven is always learning new skills and thriving as an entrepreneur. "He is going to be a leader, and it is a privilege to work with him,” said co-worker & fellow Ambassador Cindy Zebryk.  


Young Professional of the Year – Kaitlyn LeBlanc, Edward Jones

Kaitlyn LeBlanc, Financial Advisor for Edward Jones, spends countless hours building her business.  Her dedication to her clients is apparent through her weekly and monthly check-ins, home-visits and numerous appointments every day.  Not only is she loyal to her clients, she is loyal to her community. You will always find her volunteering at various networking events, making sure everyone feels welcomed and included. Her hours of contribution to the Chamber, dedication to her profession and wonderful attitude are just a few of the reasons she is so deserving of this award. 

The Young Professional of the Year Award was presented by Riviera Utilities.

Baldwin County Chamber Coalition Releases 2020 Primary Election Guide

FAIRHOPE, Ala.- The Baldwin County Chamber Coalition has released an Election Guide for the 2020 Primaries. 

It is now available online at http://bit.ly/BaldwinCo2020PrimaryElectionGuide and in print at the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce office at 327 Fairhope Avenue in Fairhope. 

The Election Guide includes important election dates, links to resources and a listing of all qualified candidates on the Baldwin County ballot.

Candidates from the US House District 1 and US Senate races were asked to answer questions to help voters decide who best represents their personal values.

The Baldwin County Chamber Coalition does not endorse any specific candidate, but does strive to inform voters on where candidates stand on issues facing the local business community. 

These Election Guides will be updated following the primary election. Primary Election day is March 3, 2020.



The Baldwin County Chamber Coalition is comprised of all five Baldwin County Chambers of Commerce, who represent and serve their memberships with a collective voice through collaboration. The Coalition aims to support business by educating employers and their employees regarding important legislative issues, connecting directly with our local elected officials about issues that matter to our business members in Baldwin County, and effectively representing 3,500 members and 74,000 employees in combined membership.


Daphne High School to Host Career Fair

Daphne High School will be having its first annual Career Fair on Wednesday, January 29th, 2020 for all Daphne High School Junior and Senior students at Trojan Hall from 8:30 a.m.- 2p.m.

The objective is to create a partnership with business, industry and education to provide our students with information on career exploration, local job opportunities, and employment requirements.

This is our formal invitation to invite you and your business to speak with our juniors and seniors to provide them with information about transitioning from high school into a potential career field. 

We would be honored for you to join us for this day to talk with our students about their future endeavors.

Thank you so much for your support and consideration as we strive to provide Daphne High School students with information on Career Development and Alabama’s workforce.

Home Boss Inspections: November Small Business of the Month

Congratulations to Home Boss Inspection, our November 2019 Small Business of the Month!
Home Boss Inspection was started in 2016 when owner Tim Lower and his family moved to Baldwin County.

In just three years, this company has seen a tremendous amount of growth. The company started as one person. Today, their staff includes the BOSS himself, Tim Lower, four inspectors and a marketing coordinator.

"Home Boss inspection is now a franchise and we have our first two franchises in Mobile Alabama and Pensacola Florida and looking to grow exponentially over the next five years all across the US,” said Lower.

He got his start partnering with local businesses and local Chambers of Commerce. "We support the community through several different charities throughout the years as well as volunteering our time,” said Lower. "We also take the time out to serve food to some of our police/firefighters in the area to show our support and what they do in our communities.”
You’ve probably even spotted them a many of our Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce events.
The mission at Home Boss Inspections is to be the go-to inspection company in the Gulf Coast and the United States for clients looking for detail, professionalism and integrity to help them make their real estate decisions.
They achieve this by being painstaking in their processes and putting quality results first in everything they do. They go the extra mail to provide quick turnaround times and keep the scheduled time frame they promise clients.
To learn more about Home Boss Inspections, visit their website at http://www.homebossinspection.com/.

Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce Workforce Development Director Graduates from U.S. Chamber Foundation Education & Workforce Fellowship Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation today announced Christina Hellmich, Director of Workforce Development of the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce graduated from its premier business leadership program. The inaugural Business Leads Fellowship Program trained and equipped leaders from state and local chambers of commerce with resources, access to experts, and a network of peers to build their capacity to address the most pressing education and workforce challenges.


"I was honored to be selected into this Business Leads Fellowship and delighted to represent the Baldwin County Business Community. Through my engagement with this elite group of Chamber professionals from across the country, I was able to take away new ways to engage the business community. My hope is that we can implement change along the education and workforce continuum. In the end, we all want the same result, an education-to-workforce pipeline so that we may fuel economic success and sustainability.”


"As clearly displayed throughout this program, state and local leaders know better than anyone the critical link between education and economic development,” says Cheryl Oldham, senior vice president of the Center for Education and Workforce. "Not only did the Fellows gain a network of peers and experts in the field, the program is designed to help these leaders find opportunities to develop initiatives that will continue to advance the growth of their local economy and put education policy into practice.”


Following a competitive application and selection process, Christina was selected along with 32 other state and local chamber executives to participate in the second cohort. The four-month program covered the entire talent pipeline, including early childhood education, K-12, higher education, and workforce development.


Upon completion, Business Leads Fellows join the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s dedicated network of 200 chambers of commerce and statewide associations from around the nation who regularly engage on education and workforce initiatives. 


MONTGOMERY, AL – Starting Tuesday, September 10 until Thursday, October 10, the Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE) is asking for assistance from people of all walks of life as they launch the TAKE 10 FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION survey. This is an attempt to take the opinions and concerns of the people of Alabama into consideration while developing the ALSDE’s new strategic plan for public education.
Dr. Eric Mackey, State Superintendent of Education, said the plan is to look at the public’s opinion on various issues and use that information as the ALSDE and the Alabama State Board of Education determines priorities and establishes goals and objectives for the coming years.
"Ultimately, our goal is to continue to improve the quality of education for all students and adequately prepare them for life after high school. In order to do that we are casting a wide net to get opinions from the public,” Mackey said. "We are reaching out to teachers, principals, students, superintendents, legislators, retirees, military families, faith communities, education advocates and agencies, chambers of commerce, and many others, to see how people in the state of Alabama feel about a variety of issues facing public education today.”
The survey, which takes approximately TEN Minutes to complete, can be found by clicking on the Take 10 logo on the front page of the ALSDE website (www.alsde.edu). A link directly to the survey (https://tinyurl.com/Take10AL) is also being promoted through various education, business, and parent organizations.
The compilation of this data is instrumental to the ALSDE and the development of a strategic plan for Alabama’s public schools. This will be a plan that not only involves the experience and perspective of the education leaders at the ALSDE as well as the Alabama State Board of Education… but also the viewpoint of Alabamians from every walk of life. Mackey encourages people to not only participate in the Take 10 FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION survey, but also to share the link with friends and colleagues.
"We are asking people to Take 10 minutes out of their busy schedules to complete this survey on public education in Alabama,” Mackey said. "It may only TAKE 10 minutes to complete the survey… but the impact your participation has on the development of the department’s strategic plan will resonate for years to come.”

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