Vinson, Jackson receive accolades

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

It's safe to say the local chambers of commerce are held in high esteem at the state level.

Two big honors were recently bestowed upon the local business scene by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which lists 134 local chamber members on its website.

The Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce was named the organization's 2017 Chamber of the Year, and local business owner Dennis Vinson was designated as chairman of its board of directors. Congratulations are heartily extended on those two lofty honors, which acknowledge their contributions and influence on both the state and local levels.

The Jackson Chamber of Commerce has thrived under director Brian Gerau, who has overseen 91 percent membership growth during his nine-year tenure with its current membership at more than 515.

"The Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce is a driver of economic growth in the Southeast Missouri region," Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry president and CEO Dan Mehan said in a news release with the announcement. "From explosive membership growth to innovative and collaborative approaches to meet Jackson's workforce needs, the Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce is helping grow jobs in Missouri and is setting the standard in the chamber business."

Vinson, who lives in Cape Girardeau but is president and CEO of Signature Packaging in Jackson, has been a member of both the Cape and Jackson chambers of commerce. He's also served on the board of directors for the Missouri State Chamber of Commerce and Industry and will begin his two-year tenure as chairman in November. He told Southeast Missourian reporter Tyler Graef that state members approached him about the position.

"I wanted to serve on the board because I wanted to be at the table," he said. "Doing things ... I wouldn't say I'm a behind-the-scenes guy, but I like to be involved. I like to be connected."

We wish in him well as he takes on this increased leadership on the state level in shaping the economic environment in Missouri.

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