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The Pageland Chamber of Commerce treated 75 ladies to a luncheon on April 21st at the Community Center.  Guest mingled prior to the noon start, enjoying each other’s company. 

April 030Chamber President, Joe Steen welcomed everyone and thanked them for coming out to celebrate their day with us.  The ladies were treated to a meal provided by Lynn’s Cafe of Pageland.

The speaker for the occasion was Julie Perkins, Development Director for Union County Habitat for Humanity.  Julie informed the ladies about the fund raising efforts of Habitat and how folks in the community can help.  She also announced that the first Habitat home in Pageland will soon break ground on Evans Mill Road, the site of 3 homes, eventually.  This first house will be a “Women Build” home – yes, built by women!  She encouraged everyone to do whatever they can to help.  You don’t need to have a skill, just a desire to assist. April 047

Julie also told the crowd about the differences in a Habitat home and one built by a show like Extreme Makeover Homes.  Habitat homes are not extravagant, the essentials are included and it is also partially built by the soon to be resident.    The homes are well built, exceeding code requirements and include a sprinkler system.  Habitat home recipients have to log several hours of volunteer time and they also have to make a mortgage payment.  Habitat secures the finances for a period of 10 years before it is totally turned over to the home buyer, giving that person time to adjust to payments and utility cost.

Julie also announced that the home will be built for Alisha Diggs and her three children.  Alisha works at CMC-Union in Monroe and will be onsite helping out at many times.  Julie has met with Alisha and is excited for her and the family.

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Next, the Chamber announced the 2010 Outstanding Woman in Business.  Kimberly Burch was chosen for her years of public service.  She is currently the coordinator for existing industry for the Chesterfield County Economic Development.  Kim also serves on the Northeastern Technical College Board and as Vice-Chairman of the Chesterfield County School Board.  Kim is married to Paul Burch, Judge for the 4th Circuit Court and they have three children – Ashley, Kendall and Mike.  Joe then explained how in trying to keep the announcement a surprise until the last minute, it can sometimes cause a problem.  In doing so this year, Kim could not be present, due to prior commitments in Columbia.  Kendall was on hand to receive the award for her mom.  She passed along a message of thanks and surprise from Kim.

The last few minutes of the luncheon were spent with prize drawings.  These items were donated by Chamber Member businesses.  There were plenty of prizes to go around, as everyone present was a winner.  As the guest were leaving, Chamber Board members passed along an additional goodie bag, filled with items from area businesses and a insulated bag from the Chamber.

We would like to thank all the businesses and employers that participated in this year’s Women in Business Luncheon.  We stand proud of the women in the business community.