Rachael Gilbert was officially sworn in as the chamber's 2018 chairwoman.
The Ormond Beach Chamber of Commerce swore in their new board of directors for 2018 at its annual banquet held at the Oceanside Country Club on Friday, Jan. 26.
Judge Bryan Feigenbaum installed the new members, including the chamber's chairwoman for 2018, Rachael Gilbert, vice president and market leader for BB&T banks in Ormond Beach and Palm Coast.
“Growing up in Ormond Beach, I could have never imagined where I am today, especially standing in this very spot," Gilbert said.
During her first words as chairwoman of the chamber, Gilbert said that when she was younger, she took for granted Ormond Beach, where she was raised. She said she had big plans for leaving and starting her life elsewhere. Instead, she met her husband, who also grew up in the city, and made a life here.
Her goals for 2018 are to continue to grow the events the chamber has added in the past year, engage both current and new members and develop future leaders in the chamber and the community.
“The chamber has seen much change in the past few years," Gilbert said. "The hard work of my predecessors, fellow board members, committee chairs, volunteers and staff had brought us to where we are today.”
The chamber also said goodbye to its 2017 chairman, Rafael Ramirez. CEO and President Debbie Cotton became emotional as she presented him with the chairman's plaque.
“The chamber has achieved new milestones as a team through your leadership," Cotton said. "You were there to guide us, ask the right questions, and mostly support me. I appreciate all he’s done for the chamber and for our city.”
On his part, Ramirez said the chamber has finished the year with over 800 members and that he's excited to leave the board in Gilbert's hands.
“We had a great year," Ramirez said. "I’m really looking forward to Rachael’s leadership. She is the best candidate we have.”