A crowd of around 40 people gathered, laughed and networked over pizza and salad at the monthly Denver Area Business Association (DABA) meeting held Thursday at Georgio`s Restaurant, N.C. 16, Denver.
During the meeting, DABA member Joe DiPento pointed out that there was a â€œcross pollinationâ€ of leadership from Lincoln County at the meeting.
â€œWe have the DABA president, the 2006 Chamber Chairman and the Denver/Lake Norman Rotary president here today,â€ said DiPento.
Gary Caldwell, 2006 DABA president, added to DiPento`s comment by saying the chamber is â€œencouraging dual membership.â€
â€œIâ€™ve found that a lot of chamber members belong to several other groups,â€ said Caldwell. â€œIn talking with several chamber board members, weâ€™re trying to build a sense of camaraderie within the business community.â€
When asked how this would affect the future possibility of DABA becoming a chamber of commerce, Caldwell said â€œeveryone getting involved only strengthens that position. Participation will make us strong. No one can do everything but everyone can do a little.â€
Caldwell added that DABA is a member of the Lincolnton/Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce.
â€œThe group as a whole needs to attend more ribbon-cuttings and business after hours functions,â€ said Caldwell.
While 2006 Lincolnton/Lincoln County chamber chairman Brad Rivers did not disagree with Caldwellâ€™s statement about business having dual membership in organizations, he pointed out that the chamber`s board does not endorse dual membership in an interview after the meeting.
â€œWe encourage chamber membership because weâ€™re looking to be the one voice for business in Lincoln County,â€ he said. â€œWe have a passion for business and unity here in Lincoln County, and weâ€™re encouraging people to do what is good for business.â€
Also during the meeting, DABA member Cher Lineberger with Integrity Home Mortgage revealed that the group wants to assemble welcome bags to be given out to new DABA members.
â€œThe bag would contain donated stuff from other DABA members like pens, pads and coffee mugs,â€ said Lineberger.
The goal, added Lineberger, is to get enough donated items to start assembling the bags by the April 21 meeting, which will feature 10th district Rep. Patrick McHenry at Verdict Ridge Country Club. The cost of the meal before the meeting is $17.
â€œItâ€™s going to be a goodie-bag that says welcome from DABA,â€ said Lineberger.
Caldwell added the welcome bag project is in the planning stages.
â€œIâ€™ve had a lot of inquiries on this,â€ said Caldwell.
2005 DABA president Andrew Johnson reported to the group that raffle tickets to raise money for DABAâ€™s annual fireworks display will go on sale May 1 with a charge of $5 each.
â€œThis year, we`re giving away a four-day/three-night Bahamas cruise, a grill from Turbyfill True-Value Hardware and a Denver basket,â€ said Johnson. â€œAll of the money goes into programs like having guest speakers at future meetings and future fireworks displays. That money is being invested into the community.â€
Hit the road
DABA member Bo Moore, meantime, told the crowd of a transportation meeting scheduled for 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 17, at the East Lincoln Community Center.
Among those attending will be retired Judge Bob Collier with the state department of transportation and district transportation representative Jackie McSwain.
â€œ$1.7 million has been budgeted for the upgrading of N.C. 16/73,â€ said Moore.
Many of the members in attendance at the meeting noticed the space at Georgioâ€™s were overflowing.
In an email sent to DABA members Friday morning, president Gary Caldwell said â€œweâ€™re looking for a larger space even as we speak.â€
by Jon Mayhew