AMORY - Monroe County Chamber of Commerce is getting ready for its annual banquet.
The banquet will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 31, at the National Guard Armory in Amory, located on Highway 25 North, near the Monroe County Government Complex.
In addition to the food, prepared by Bo Riley's, the banquet will also feature entertainment by The Directors, a silent auction by the South Monroe County Community Foundation, and the presentation of awards in different areas, such as Volunteer, Industry and Business of the Year, plus a Community Focus Award. The banquet menu will include a choice of chicken or pork, with potatoes, green beans, salad, roll, tea and an assortment of desserts.
Recognition will be given to outgoing chairman of the board, Greg Miller, and the current chairman of the board, Hozay Hausley. Tickets are $25 (with $10 for high school age and younger) and are available from any Chamber board member or by calling Kathy Lusby at the Aberdeen office, 369-6488 or Ronda Riley at the Amory office, 256-7194. Emails may also be sent to email@example.com.
Keynote speaker at the event will be Phil Hardwick, coordinator of Capacity Development at the John C. Stennis Institute of Government at Mississippi State University, where he works with communities regarding strategic planning and leadership development.
As a consultant, Hardwick also provides strategic planning and leadership training services for chambers of commerce and nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining the Stennis Institute in August of 2003, he was vice-president of Community and Economic Development at Mississippi Valley Gas Company.
Hardwick is the immediate past-president of the Mississippi Association of Partners in Education, and is a past president of the Mississippi Main Street Association, the Mississippi Economic Development Council and the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum, and is also a member of the board of directors of the Mississippi International Ballet Competition.
An undergraduate degree was received from Belhaven College, and he has an MBA from Millsaps College. A graduate of the Senior Executives in State and Local Government executive program at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, Hardwick also served in the military. During his military service, he was security team leader for Army One, the Presidential helicopter.
A prolific writer, Hardwick pens an award-winning column on real estate and economic development, which appears bi-weekly in the Mississippi Business Journal, and in his spare time he writes mystery novels.