ARTESIA, CA – More than 180 guests, from local businesses to local dignitaries, attended the fourth annual Artesia Chamber of Commerce Installation Luncheon at the DES Portuguese Hall here, where Los Angeles County Board of Supervisor Don Knabe installed a new Board of Officers for 2014.
Shah welcomed everybody to “a brand new exciting year for the Chamber.” He thanked local officials for attending who included Mayor Tony Lima, council members Miguel Canales, Ali Taj, Victor Manalo and Sally Flowers, and city manager Bill Rawlings.
Praising the previous Board, especially past president Elizabeth Makabali, “for your dedication and strong leadership this past year,” Shah said, “She has kept us on our toes and has kept this boat of the Chamber sailing in the right direction and avoiding all the pitfalls.” He acknowledged that the Chamber is only four years old, “and like four-year-olds, we are going through many growing pains, but we have already established our identity.”
Shah told the audience that this year is going to be a memorable year for the Chamber. “Many changes are taking place in the city, like new medians on South Street, possible revitalization of Downtown Pioneer Blvd. with pedestrian-friendly kiosks, a new permanent city manager, and a new community newspaper. We may even have a couple national chain restaurants in town soon. Progress is coming to Artesia!” Shah believes the Artesia Chamber will be at the forefront and have a voice in these changes. “We, as the Artesia Chamber, will help build a thriving business climate for all of our businesses and our entire community, and the strength of any organization is the number of its members, so my first priority is to increase our membership.”
The new President acknowledged it is not going to be easy, “but I am going to give my all to achieve this goal.” He announced that he had already enrolled ten new members and encouraged all in the board “to roll up your sleeves and start enrolling new members so we can improve our communication by keeping them better informed while strengthening our ties with the local community.” He said the Chamber wants to continue hosting successful events such as grand openings, luncheons, evening mixers, a business expo at the park, joint chamber events, and a scholarship program for high school seniors who live in Artesia.
Shah concluded his prepared speech by proposing that the Chamber adopt a sister city chamber of commerce. “What country and what city—that will be left to the board. I look forward to working with all of you to help make Artesia the best place to be in 2014.”