Copy and images provided by Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce
Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce Annual Thanksgiving Luncheon Honored Businesses and Organizations
The Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce held the 18th Annual Thanksgiving Community Luncheon on Tuesday, November 18, 2014 at The DoubleTree Hotel in Binghamton. A sold out event of over five hundred Chamber members and business leaders attended this event to kick off the Holiday season and to celebrate what we are thankful for in our community.
We congratulate the Chamber’s 2014 Community Advocate and Corporate Citizen of the Year award recipients!
2014 Community Advocate of the Year: Roberson Museum and Science Center
The Community Advocate of the Year is awarded to an organization that has made a significant contribution to the improvement and/or enrichment of the neighborhood it serves, or the Greater Binghamton area as a whole.
Roberson is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year and has served as a hub of cultural activity since it opened to the public in 1954! The fact that Roberson is vibrant and relevant after 60 years is a true accomplishment! They have long been committed to collecting, preserving and interpreting the stories of our community through exhibitions and educational programming. Each year, they host some 15,000 visitors and over 20,000 students.
The Roberson staff enjoys reaching out to the community by participating in such events as the planning for the Recreation Park’s “Our Space” project and the “Youth Success” program operated through the Mayor of Binghamton’s office. The Museum welcomes the participation of students from Binghamton University. These students develop exhibitions and educational programs, and comprise the staff of per-diem Museum Educators and volunteer interns.
The diversity of annual events offered to the community has grown, reaching people who would not normally attend an event at Roberson.
Inaugurated in 2013, RoberCon, a science-fiction convention, became a two-day event this year, drawing over 1500 attendees including people who stayed in area hotels! This brought an entirely new genre of people to the Museum and to our community.
Roberson’s Annual Wine & Food Fest attracts 700 attendees each and every year; “Home for the Holidays”, a long-time perennial favorite, allows businesses and individuals to embrace their history and heritage through decorating, music and crafts.
In 2012, Roberson hosted a very special two-day exhibit to mark the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, one of only eight sites chosen in New York State. That exhibit afforded visitors an unprecedented display of the only
surviving version of the document in Lincoln’s handwriting. What an important event for the greater Binghamton area and beyond!
Roberson Museum and Science Center is truly a historical gem that helps to present our community in a strong and positive light. Terry McDonald, Executive Director of Roberson accepted the Award.
2014 Corporate Citizen of the Year: NBT Bank
The Corporate Citizen of the Year is awarded to a company that has made not only a financial commitment to the Greater Binghamton area, but a commitment to providing leadership and hands-on employee participation.
Headquartered in Norwich since 1856, NBT Bank is an independent, community bank that has 11 offices serving customers in the Greater Binghamton area and over 155 locations in five states. To encapsulate NBT Bank’s philanthropic financial commitment to this community, their staff involvement in the community, and their development of community partnerships in the Greater Binghamton area is a monumental task to accomplish within a short period of time.
Ensuring that the youth and young adults in our area will have the skills they need to become successful adults is a priority of NBT Bank. In April of this year, they announced their partnership with the American Red Cross and the sponsorship of their Youth Good Samaritan Award. This Award recognizes heroic youths throughout the Southern Tier, Central New York and the Mohawk Valley and is part of the Real Heroes Breakfast events, the Red Cross’ signature annual event.
Through NBT Bank’s Strive® financial education program, the bank offers in-classroom and online resources, and they have conducted more than 300 presentations across their bank region for schools and community groups to promote financial literacy.
In addition to their strong commitment to the youth of our area, NBT Bank’s involvement extends to all aspects of the community. As Mary Jo Thorn, CEO of ACHIEVE, says: “They work in true partnership with our organization – understand our mission – and are willing to go above and beyond to help us continue the work we do in the community.”
In addition to financial support of a long list of non-profit organizations within the greater Binghamton area, NBT Bank’s employees contribute time and expertise to many local committees and boards. If it is important to the community, you will most likely find the people of NBT Bank involved and supporting the effort through their time, money or resources. These Boards include: American Cancer Society Advisory Board, BU’s School of Management Advisory Board, Discovery Center Foundation Board, the Good Will Theatre Board, and the Lourdes Hospital Board.
NBT Bank is also committed to fostering local economic development that will impact infrastructure upgrades, add employment opportunities and revitalize downtown areas. They are involved with the Binghamton Local Development Corporation, the BCIDA, the Downtown Binghamton Association, Empire State Development, just to name a few.
Alan Hertel, Executive Director of the United Way of Broome County, eloquently sums up the kind of organization NBT Bank is: “Whenever there is a new challenge or problem facing our community, NBT and its leadership is always at the top of the list…to call for help. They understand the importance of giving back to the communities they serve and through that giving back, make this a much better place for all of us.” Jeff Lake, NBT’s Regional President, accepted the Award.
In addition to our awards, the Chamber presented a donation of $2,000 to Bob Brazill, Development Officer, ACHIEVE, as a result of the Chamber’s recent Winetasting Event in October.
Larry Kassan, Coordinator of Special Events and Theatre for the Binghamton City School District’s Rod Serling School of the Arts, concluded the event as the keynote speaker touting the wonderful things that make up his hometown