The California Area Chamber of Commerce held its Annual Dinner meeting Jan. 29, at the California Nutrition Center. From 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. guests were invited to try appetizers, look and bid on silent auction items and hear the musical entertainment of Phil Lewis. At 6 p.m. outgoing Chamber President Bonnie George welcomed the attendants and introduced Dr. Peter M. Kurowski, pastor of St. Paul's Lutheran Church, who led the invocation before the meal. The VFW Color Guard including George Shelley, Bernie Bestgen and Edward Ziegs presented the colors and led the Pledge of Allegiance. For dinner, the California Eagles Auxiliary #4027 catered a meal including ham, roast beef, potatoes, green beans, corn, rolls, salad and a plethora of desserts.
After the dinner attendants were given an opportunity to peruse the silent auction items and place their final bids. As the silent auction came to a close, Ben Dugan, Atterberrry Auction and Realty C. LLC, started the live auction with Larry Higgins, Kenny Kunze and Charlie Roll as bid takers. Avery Kunze served as the "Vanna White" of the auction and showcased the items up for bid. The auctions raised approximately $3,600. All of the proceeds from the auctions go to the Chamber Scholarship Fund.
After the auctions the Annual Meeting was held, the minutes from the 2010 meeting were approved along with the 2011 budget and treasurer's report. Next, George gave the president's report which included gratitude for her time served and an introduction of new Chamber Executive Secretary Diane Eulinger.
Next, 2010 Chamber Board Directors were elected for three-year terms including Tammy Bleich (USDA Farm Service Agency), Paula Earls (California Democrat), Hope Hoellering (Putnam Chevrolet), Brian Hufendiek (Moreau Valley Enterprises), Chris Long (Central Bank), Melanie McDonald (Commerce Bank), Pam White (Sonic Drive-In) and Marla Wright (independent). Chamber Board officer nominees for 2011 were elected which included President Shelly Hampton, Vice President Norris Gerhart, Secretary Roberta Rothstein and Treasurer Melissa Bonecutter.
After the elections, Brad Baer gave a presentation on the 2010 Ozark Ham & Turkey Festival.
After the meeting was adjourned the 2011 Business and Citizens of the Year were announced.
Morris Burger gave a brief history and announced California Construction Supply was awarded Business of the Year for their work in the area. Earl Friedmeyer accepted the award.
George Shelley was awarded the Annual Citizen of the Year Award for his many years of selfless service to California. Bonnie George and Sally Vogel shared stories of Shelley's service and presented him the award.
The evening concluded with a presentation by Morris and Dolores Burger on the history of Moniteau County Sheriffs. Sheriffs presented with date of appointment and current living relatives are Nicholas Gray (1845), Philip (or Phillip) D. Stephens (1846), David B. Peters (1850), Stephen Howard Sr. (1850), Alexander H. Spencer (1850), Thomas Harvey Howard (1854), David Elbridge Gerry Rollins (1856), Alfred B. Fisher (1860), Samuel Hoge (1862), James S. Hume, Sr. (1864), Gustave A. Burkhardt (1868), Hugh Ashburn Yarnell (1872, 1880, Shirley Elliot is a distant relative), John D. Wood (1876, John Wood was a first cousin to Marie Wood's grandfather Matthew Wood and a first cousin to James Albin's great grandmother, Cynthia Wood Toler), Columbus Christopher DonCarlos (1882), William Jasper Fulks (1886, Eleanor Scherff and Ed Hert are great-grandchildren of William Jasper Fulks), Charles Green Hale (1890), Charles E. Born (1892), Charles G. Inglish (1896, Charles G. Inglish is a distant cousin of Stuart Inglish and David Inglish), John Robert Elliott (1900, Robert H. Elliott is a great nephew of John Robert Elliott), Jesse L. Hornbeck (1904), John P.H. Allee (1906, Barbara Allee Walter is a great-granddaughter of John P.H. Allee), George W. Wilson (1912), Edward Hamilton Burford (1916), Samuel Holzer (1920), Joseph Brant Powell (1924, 1932), John Andrew Rosenmiller (1928, John Andrew Rosenmiller is the Great-Great Uncle of Carl Rosenmiller, Jr.), Rudolph "Rudy" J. Walter (1936, Gary Walter is the Great Nephew of Rudolph Walter), Walter Haldiman (1940, 1948, Father of Charlene Ford and Mary Lou Hert), Frederick "Fred" Bailey (1943, Great Uncle of Mary Dee Bailey Branch), Theodore A. Albers (1944, Grandfather of Jerry Strickfaden), Jerry McCarty (1968), Harold David Lamm (1976), Kenneth "Kenny" Jones (1984) and Jeptha "J" R. Gump (2004). Pictures in the program booklet included William Jasper Fulks (the earliest picture of a sheriff they could find), Jeptha "J" R. Gump (the current sheriff) and the longest tenured sheriffs Kenneth "Kenny" Jones (who served from 1984-2004) and Walter E. Haldiman (who served from 1940-1944 and 1948-1968).
For more great stories check out the Feb. 2 issue of the California Democrat.