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Business boosters celebrate 100 years with a bang

Past president: We must work to attract new businesses

Published: Friday, Jan. 25, 2013 1:15 a.m. CDT
(Alex T. Paschal/apaschal@saukvalley.com)
Fireworks capped the Sauk Valley Area Chamber of Commerce's 100th anniversary celebration, held at the Deer Valley Country Club.
(Alex T. Paschal/apaschal@saukvalley.com)
Bill Griswold, one of the chamber's past presidents, greets longtime chamber secretary Beverly Breed Thursday night. Presidents from years past were recognized during the dinner.

DEER GROVE – The Sauk Valley Area Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 100th anniversary Thursday night by looking back at its history and seeking advice for the future from past presidents.

The Sterling-Rock Falls Commercial Club was organized in 1912.

At its annual dinner at Deer Valley Country Club, the chamber played a video in which three past chamber presidents discussed its key achievements, such as advocating for the aldermanic form of government, as discussed by David Lowe, president in 1974.

Don Vogel, president from 1989-1990, said the chamber has done well in making the Sterling area an attractive place for new businesses, by working on a "check list" of desireable systems: a strong school system, a transportation system, and a hospital system.

But there is more work to be done, he acknowledged:

"We have to work together to attract businesses and keep the ones we have," Vogel said.

Two outgoing members of the board of directors were recognized: John Gvozdjak of Frantz Manufacturing, who served one 3-year term, and Dana McCoy of CGH Medical Center, who served three terms.

They were replaced by Dr. Paul Steinke, president and CEO of CGH Medical Center, and Jim Cesarek, co-owner of Sauk Valley Re/Max.

The night ended with a fireworks display.

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