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Chamber honors local businesses

SAINT AUGUSTINE – – St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce (SJCCC) held its Annual Recognition and Awards Event, “Branded 2019 – Recognizing Business Leaders that Have Made their Mark” Oct. 25 at Shell Hall at the World Golf Hall of Fame. Keynote speaker was Craig Dickman, Managing Director for TitletownTech Innovation Center in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

The award winners for the 2018-2019 fiscal year were; St Augustine Chamber Ambassador of the Year/ Gene Morse Award winner, Robin Burchfield with St. Augustine Youth Services. The Ponte Vedra Beach Division Ambassador of the Year/Grace Hayes Award went to David Godwin of, Transamerica Agency Network.

The Chairman’s Award was given to Melissa Rowe of  Puroclean Emergency Restoration Services; The 2018-2019 Fred Schroeder Award/Economic Development Council Member of the Year went to Rulon International, while the Chamber’s Public Policy Member of the Year was Beth Sweeny with Flagler College.   The President’s Award winners were, Cecil Gibson of  Ameris Bank; and  Mary O’Brien, of Meridian Waste. Mike Davis of AD Davis Construction was recognized as the outgoing Chairman of the Economic Development Council.

The 2018-2019 Small Business of the Year Award was presented to  Vested Metals International; and  the 2018-2019 Member of the Year Award went to  Jim Bush with Florida Power & Light Co.

 Mark Nighbor of Advanced Disposal was welcomed in as the new Chairman of the Board of Directors for the 2019-2020 year.

Dirk Schroeder, outgoing Chairman of the Board for the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce, and owner of Century 21 St Augustine Properties, and Chamber President & CEO, Isabelle Renault handed out the awards to those individuals who set themselves apart with their service and commitment to the chamber.


Following the awards and recognition portion of the program Craig Dickman, along with Isabelle Renault led a wide ranging and in depth discussion on innovation and business collaboration, and more specifically, all the work he has been able to accomplish with the TitletownTech Innovation Center.

Emphasizing the need for talent, resources, and capital, Dickman explained TitletownTech’s partnerships with such internationally recognized names as Microsoft and the Green Bay Packers of the National Football League; explaining that businesses need the right culture and desire to promote innovation; encouraging business people to be “inclusive, explore, take risks, and be resilient”

He also discussed the need for those with a regional interest to promote an entrepreneurial ecosystem; “find the collaborative group that has the power to convene”; Dickman explained; “ this is not a competition; you all have the resources and room to grow.”

For more information on the St Johns County Chamber of Commerce please visit and for more information on  TitletownTech please visit



About Anne Heymen (146 Articles)
Retired after 49 years in major media publication, Anne spends her time as Contributing Editor to PluggedIn whenever her two cats allow her some time to herself.

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