Leadership Catoosa 2020

Front row, from left: Spencer Hogg, Northwest Georgia Joint Development Authority; Alma Estrada, First Volunteer Bank; Julie Bass, Communities in Schools; Crystal King, Common Sense Awards; Michael Lee, City of Fort Oglethorpe; Aleks Jagiella-Litts, Children’s Advocacy Center; Vanessa Stoker, CHI Memorial; Melanie Hammontree, Chattanooga Area Food Bank; Rachel Stockburger, Ringgold Telephone Company; Chamber President and CEO Amy Jackson; Chamber board chair Barton Mathews of Starr Mathews Agency. Back row, from left: Jim Amos, Shaw, Inc.; Andrew Dinsmore, Publix; Dwight Watt, Georgia Northwestern Technical College; Joshua Ball, North Georgia EMC; Leadership Catoosa Committee chair Brad Denton, Flegal Insurance; Chris Lusk, Catoosa County Public Schools; Christian Roach, Catoosa County government; Zach Beene, Center for Sports Medicine and Orthopaedics; Byron Johnson, Shaw Inc. Graduates not pictured: Cathy Jo Rector, TVFCU; Chrystal Samples, TVFCU; and Viri Marin, The Family Crisis Center.

The Catoosa County Chamber of Commerce’s “Networking at Lunch” event was held Thursday, Oct. 1, at The Colonnade in Ringgold. Catering by Alan, a Chamber member, prepared and served a delicious lunch.

Part of the program at the Chamber luncheon was the graduation of 20 participants of the Leadership Catoosa Class of 2019-20.

This year’s Leadership Catoosa graduates were Spencer Hogg, Northwest Georgia Joint Development Authority; Alma Estrada, First Volunteer Bank; Julie Bass, Communities in Schools; Crystal King, Common Sense Awards; Michael Lee, City of Fort Oglethorpe; Aleks Jagiella-Litts, Children’s Advocacy Center; Vanessa Stoker, CHI Memorial; Melanie Hammontree, Chattanooga Area Food Bank; Rachel Stockburger, Ringgold Telephone Company; Jim Amos, Shaw, Inc.; Andrew Dinsmore, Publix; Dwight Watt, GNTC; Joshua Ball, North Georgia EMC; Chris Lusk, Catoosa County Public Schools; Christian Roach, Catoosa County Government; Zach Beene, Center for Sports Medicine and Orthopaedics; Byron Johnson, Shaw, Inc.; Cathy Jo Rector, TVFCU; Chrystal Samples, TVFCU; and Viri Marin, The Family Crisis Center.

Leadership Catoosa Committee chairman Brad Denton with Flegal Insurance has served 10 years in this capacity. The Chamber is grateful for his commitment to the program as well as other committee members: Randall Dyer with Shaw Industries, Suzanne Chovanec with Communities in Schools, Kristy Lawson with the Sexual Assault Center, Evitte Parrish with FNB Bank, DeLaine Hunter with North Georgia Healthcare, and Marissa Brower with Catoosa County Public Schools.

The mission of Leadership Catoosa is to create recognized leaders and advocates of civic responsibility, business involvement in the community’s civic and public agenda, and in the political process. The September-through-June program is available by nomination of Chamber member businesses. Participants spend a very full day each month totally immersed in a different focus, starting with an overnight Kickoff at the WinShape Retreat at Berry College that focuses on “team-building”. Local Government Day, Local Small and Large Business Day, Health and Social Services Day, and State Government Day were completed in-person this year. Zoom calls became the vehicle to deliver information for Tourism Day, Economic Development Day, and Education Day. Each participant also attends several specific civic and government meetings and reports on those as part of the course.

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