Chamber holds annual dinner tonight

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 6, 1999

Tonight is awards night in Natchez and Adams County. This year’s winners of the annual Chamber of Commerce awards will be announced tonight at the organization’s fall dinner.

&uot;There are a lot of deserving people,&uot; said Chamber Director Anne Stowers. &uot;It’s a hard choice to make each year.&uot;

The awards include the Natchezian, Athena, the small business and the unification award.

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The awards recognize people who have achieved business success or who have improved the community.

The unification award is new to the chamber this year.

&uot;(The unification award) is for someone who has made a significant contribution to the unification of races in Natchez-Adams County,&uot; Stowers said.

There are two unification winners,&160;Stowers said.

The Natchezian award is given to the person who has promoted Natchez through volunteer work. The Athena award celebrates the potential of women in the community.

&uot;We try to make those a surprise,&uot; Stowers said.

At tonight’s dinner the chamber will also kick off its new year by passing the gavel to its new Chairman Stephanie Hutchins.

Members will also hear a speech from James Heidel, the executive director of the&160;Department for Economic and Community Development.

Former Chamber Chairman Mike Thompson invited Heidel, soon after he was selected as chamber chairman last year.

&uot;(Thompson) decided to put the emphasis on economic development at the beginning of his year,&uot; Stowers said.

She hopes the presentation will encourage people to involve themselves in economic development.

&uot;I hope they will gain a sense of optimism about economic development,&uot; Stowers said.

The dinner will take place at 6 p.m. at the Eola Radisson Hotel on Main Street.

It requires a $20 reservation.

The public is invited to hear Heidel speak.