EAST LIVERPOOL - The newly formed Southern Columbiana County Regional Chamber of Commerce is now open for business, having been formed Jan. 1 with the merger of East Liverpool and Calcutta chambers.
"The purpose of the merger was to strengthen the voice of the business community in the southern part of the county and to improve benefits for our members," according to Todd Alexander, who has been elected the group's first president.
Serving with him will be Dan Wolfe, vice president, with Cathy Snow currently serving as acting director.
Former directors Pam Hoppel and Debbie Smith will no longer be serving in those positions, according to Alexander, who also said that, for now, the SCCRC will be operating just the downtown office but plans to have a presence in St. Clair Township also.
He explained that St. Clair trustees have decided they may need the former chamber office in the administration building for other purposes, so it is currently not available for a SCCRC office. He said the group will be looking for another township office in the future.
"Our intent is to be just as strong in both communities. Our intent was to be in both places," Alexander said.
Some meetings of the new chamber will be held at the Peter Metrovich Community Room at St. Clair's administration building, he said.
Although just weeks old, the SCCRC has been active, already holding its first board meeting.
In addition, it has been contacted by four companies interested in joining the group, has partnered for the first Safety Council meeting, established a new website which is still under construction and has met in a day-long session with a representative of the Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation.
Next up is the Sunrise Breakfast Forum set for Jan. 29 at Kent State University-East Liverpool campus, featuring Linda Woggon, executive vice president of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce as guest speaker.
This event is being sponsored by SCCRC member Heritage Thermal Services.
Another breakfast forum is being planned for spring, as well as a banquet, and the annual Fun Day held by the former East Liverpool chamber will continue in August.