Chamber holds annual members meeting
By Stephan Drew, Editor
The Greater Darlington Chamber of Commerce held its annual membership meeting and honored hardworking citizens and businesses which have contributed to the improvement of the Darlington community and the lives of its residents. The event was held on Thursday evening at the Grand Old Post Office, located at 201 Pearl Street in Darlington. A capacity crowd attended and were treated to a delicious meal with desserts afterward. Soft, soothing piano music filtered through the venue as the crowd enjoyed their meal before the program began.
Brook Sylvester, Executive Director of the Chamber, presided over the event as Chairman Howard Nettles, Treasurer Amanda Boykin and other members presented the awards.
Darlington attorney John Milling delivered special praise to Roland “Rocky” Gannon, 98-year-old Darlington resident and local legend. Gannon has been a pilot since he joined the Army Air Corps at the age of 17. He has flown just about every type of plane there is. Milling said Gannon was “under the weather” so, his daughters, Patricia “Patty” Balazs and Mary Gannon Green accepted the Pilot Club’s Annual Caregiver Award on his behalf.
City councilmember and Chamber Chairman Howard Nettles presented the Health & Human Service Organization of the Year Award to Wilson Senior Care. The Community Pride Award was also presented by Nettles to SPC Credit Union and the Big Business Award was presented to Georgia-Pacific Corp. by Chamber Treasurer Amanda Boykin. Small Business Award was presented by Mike and Christy Weatherford to Andrews and Bryant Tax Office.
The Lifetime Achievement Award was presented by Amanda Boykin to Dr. Arlene Wallace, owner of Wallace Consulting and Darlington County educator for over 39 years. The crowd burst into applause and rose to their feet to give Wallace a standing ovation as she made her way to the stage. “All I can say is thank you so much,” Wallace stated, emotionally. She is the wife of Roosevelt Wallace, U.S. Army veteran and retired Dixie Cup Operator. Dr. Wallace was previously chosen as 2016 Educator of the Year by the Chamber.
2022 Educator of the Year was Shannon H. Fraser, Principal of Pate Elementary School. The award was presented by Dr. Jeffrey Tadlock of Wesley United Methodist Church in Hartsville. Wesley UMC received the Outstanding Youth/Youth Group award, presented by Amanda Boykin. Greater Darlington Chamber of Commerce Board Member of the Year Award was presented to Amanda Boykin by Exec. Dir. Brook Sylvester.
The Greater Darlington Chamber of Commerce office is located at 38 Public Square in Darlington. Support the chambers of commerce in your town and help improve your community.