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Sherwood Chamber of Commerce holds annual banquet; bestows 2012 community awards

<p>Teresa Kiser and DeeDee Chapman accepted the honor for B.J.&amp;#8217;s Plants and Produce as the 2012 Sherwood Business of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave them the award.</p>

Teresa Kiser and DeeDee Chapman accepted the honor for B.J.&#8217;s Plants and Produce as the 2012 Sherwood Business of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave them the award.

<p>Matt Davis is the 2012 Sherwood EMT of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave him the award.</p><p>Firefighter of the year.jpg</p>

Matt Davis is the 2012 Sherwood EMT of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave him the award.

Firefighter of the year.jpg

<p>Don Hughes is the 2012 Sherwood Man of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave him the award.</p>

Don Hughes is the 2012 Sherwood Man of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave him the award.

<p>Bernie Russell is the 2012 Sherwood Police Officer of the Year.</p>

Bernie Russell is the 2012 Sherwood Police Officer of the Year.

<p>the cutlines</p><p>Jessica Rodgers, the newly sworn in president of the Sherwood Chamber of Commerce, talks with Steve Cobb, who is the outgoing chamber president.</p><p>Cobb.jpg</p><p>Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gives his parting address to members Thursday night.</p>

the cutlines

Jessica Rodgers, the newly sworn in president of the Sherwood Chamber of Commerce, talks with Steve Cobb, who is the outgoing chamber president.

Cobb.jpg

Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gives his parting address to members Thursday night.

<p>Sherwood Police Chief David Teague is the 2012 Sherwood Firefighter of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave him the award.</p>

Sherwood Police Chief David Teague is the 2012 Sherwood Firefighter of the Year. Outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb gave him the award.

<p>Betty Barnhart accepted an award from outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb on behalf of Keep Sherwood Beautiful, for the non-profit organization&amp;#8217;s role in helping the Sherwood Farmer&amp;#8217;s Market have a successful start in 2012.</p>

Betty Barnhart accepted an award from outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb on behalf of Keep Sherwood Beautiful, for the non-profit organization&#8217;s role in helping the Sherwood Farmer&#8217;s Market have a successful start in 2012.

Sherwood Forest Thursday night was filled with members and supporters of the Sherwood Chamber of Commerce held the annual banquet and installation of officers.

The event saw the changing of the guard from outgoing Chamber President Steve Cobb with the swearing in of the organization’s newest president, Jessica Rodgers.

“I had said we were going to have a good year and I was right,” Cobb said. “So many things fell into place. The year 2012 was a year of collaboration. So many good things happened. It was a year of people getting together and working together and getting things accomplished.”

Cobb pointed out the recent development of Custom Aircraft Cabinets on Landers Road that builds cabinetry for jets around the world. CAC is housed in the former National Home Center building.

Cobb hinted another airline and space-related business may be coming to Sherwood. “The economic impact on the city will be tremendous,” Cobb said.

Cobb pointed to some of the other businesses that opened their doors in town in the past year, such as the Kum & Go gas station on Kiehl Avenue and Buffalo Wild Wings on Warden Road.

Cobb said the chamber’s decision to partner with Sherwood’s city government for the creation of an economic development office and director is paying off great dividends for the community.

Cobb credited former chamber President Joey Parker for spearheading the effort for a Sherwood economic development director, a post currently occupied by Kelly Coughlin.

Employing an economic development director has helped Sherwood tremendously, according to Cobb.

“Look at all the construction on Kiehl and (Arkansas) 107,” Cobb said. “It has never been this busy ever.”

Cobb said requests for commercial building permits in Sherwood have skyrocketed during the past 12 months.

“It doesn’t show any signs of stopping,” Cobb said. “I think Sherwood is in its renaissance with economic development. There are other businesses that are looking at Sherwood and want to come here if certain things fall into place. It will only get better.”

Cobb added, “When you are walking through town on Saturday, you can buy whatever you need in Sherwood. The benefits continue to accrue.”

Cobb said Sherwood was fortunate to have Coughlin as its economic development director. “There are a lot of other municipalities which would like to steal her from us,” he said.

Cobb also credited Chamber Director Marcia Cook for leading the organization into a positive direction.

Cobb said this year marked the first time Sherwood has had a Farmer’s Market, which he judged as a tremendous success.

Newly sworn-in President Jessica Rodgers thanks her fellow chamber members for electing her to her new post. She pledged to be a president with enthusiasm.

“Ralph Waldo Emerson said nothing great ever was achieved without enthusiasm,” Rodgers said.

Rodgers said her hope for 2013 is that enthusiasm will help continue Sherwood down the path of improved economic development.

Rodgers said she wants to see a Sherwood Young Professionals group developed. She wants to help make the first year of the Arkansas Scholars Program a success in Sherwood for 2013.

Special guest speaker Mark Wilcken, producer for the Arkansas Educational Television Network, gave chamber members advice if they want to put Sherwood more visibly on the map.

“If I would give Sherwood any advice to purse, I would say embrace what makes you unique and what will make you unique in the future,” Wilcken said. “If you do that, someone like me will want to film you.”

Wilcken added, “Sherwood if you are doing something interesting and different, let people know about it.”

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