I am proud to say we ended the year with a record number of members. We had our 855th member join in December, putting us in a tie for the highest membership level in the organization's history.
I can not begin to express the amount of appreciation I have for the incredible work of our Chamber team. Led by Sharla Meisenheimer and Samantha Ellison, our membership team has been incredibly diligent in getting us to this point. It is also important to recognize the dozens of volunteers who have helped us throughout the year, in particular with the membership drive in October, helping us achieve this goal.
The record of 855 was established in April 1999. The recession after 9-11 hurt membership significantly before a surge in the mid 2000s got us over 800 again. We had dipped over the last few years before targeting the record as our goal for 2022.
So what's next? We will continue to try and build on the success of 2021 with a heightened effort to attract, but more importantly to retain, membership in 2022. As mentioned here previously, we have just started new member orientations. These small group sessions take place at 7 a.m., Noon and 4 p.m. to accommodate as many different schedules as possible. If you would like to attend, contact Samantha in our office.
We will also be working with our membership committee on new ideas for engagement. If you have ideas, give us a call.
Again, thank you so much for your support in getting us to our goal. We can't wait to see what 2022 brings.