GEMC Chamber kicks off year with impressive luncheon attendance

07 February, 2019

Combine an enthusiastic crowd with a passion for business, good food, relevant content with a dash of Boudreaux and Thibodeaux jokes, and you have the recipe for a successful chamber lunch. The Greater East Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce held the first of eleven luncheons for 2019 and nearly two hundred were in attendance.

Photo: GEMC Chamber

Chamber President Rick Hatcher welcomed everyone and thanked those who reached out to him and his wife Karla regarding the recent passing of her mother.


Paster Clay Whitaker of Friendship United Methodist Church led the group in prayer which was followed by flag pledges led by Christian Shank of Shank Wealth Management.

This month's table sponsor was the Rotary Club of East Montgomery County. President Jim Stubbs described the organization's mission and accomplishments including raising and donating more than $425,000 in scholarships to area high school graduates.

Rotary Club of East Montgomery County President Jim Stubbs
Photo: GEMC Chamber


Chamber Chairman of the Board Mark Linabury introduced this year's board of directors and spoke on their successful planning meeting held in January. Highlights included focusing on what the chamber is and why it exists. "We are a business membership organization." said Linabury, "We are fine-tuning the chamber's skills to serve our members with opportunities to build and grow their businesses. The chamber will continue to do this by offering exciting, effective and accessible promotional, educational, and networking opportunities for its members. Bottom line? It's great for business!"

A new segment to monthly luncheons is recognizing an Ambassador of the Month. This month honors went to Ericka Pol of Farmers Insurance and her commitment and involvement as an ambassador with the chamber.


Door prizes were then drawn by Pauline Worth of Keller Williams Northeast and followed by the announcement of twenty-two renewing members.

Pauline Worth and Rick Hatcher
Photo: GEMC Chamber

Mark Linabury of ServiceMaster Restore then introduced nine new members including, Gringo's Tex-Mex of New Caney, Buffalo Wild Wings at Valley Ranch, Analytic Services LLC, Texas Mounted Patrol Security, Batteries Plus Bulbs, Progressive Dental Group, TitleMax, Mosquito Authority, and the Steel Wheels Club.

New Members
Photo: GEMC Chamber

"Newly elected Montgomery County Judge Mark Keough addressed our chamber with some thoughts about the challenges ahead for East Montgomery County and the rest of our fast-growing region." said chamber president Rick Hatcher. "Mobility is a main concern for our future economic development, but it must be done right and with constituent input said the Judge. The only area of the county that has a mobility plan in place is South County in The Woodlands. We need to have this done for the remainder of the county and especially in fast-growing areas such as East County. Flooding issues are also of major concern and we must leverage as many dollars as we can to help the Lake Houston area be able to take on water from the much larger and deeper Lake Conroe through enhancing Lake Houston’s ability to take higher flow and help disburse our huge watershed. Working alongside our citizens with their input and other funding agencies to accomplish our goals for a safer, productive community lies within our means and we will succeed."

Newly elected Montgomery County Judge Mark Keough addressed the chamber with some thoughts about the challenges ahead for East Montgomery County and the rest of our fast-growing region.

The event concluded with thanking the East Montgomery County Improvement District-(EMCID) for their support of the chamber and upcoming event announcements including the Chamber's Casino Night on February 15th, Breakfast Connections Networking on February 20th, and Thirsty Thursday Networking to be held at RC's NYC Pizza and Pasta at Valley Ranch on February 21st.

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