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The Dallas Black Chamber Of Commerce Celebrates 86 Years Of Constructive Leadership At The 2012 Awards Banquet

The oldest and largest Black chamber of commerce in the nation, the Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce (DBCC), held its 86th Annual Awards Banquet on Friday, October 12, 2012 at the Dallas Convention Center.

More than 600 attendees came out to celebrate the 86th Anniversary of the Dallas Black Chamber’s constructive leadership in the Dallas business community. The annual banquet is the highlight of the chamber’s annual event line up as it serves to provide a progress report on the chamber for the year as well as to acknowledge those chamber members, sponsors and supporters who have gone above and beyond to support the chamber in its community efforts.

Platinum sponsors for the banquet were: Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART), Texas Instruments and Wells Fargo. Other major level sponsors were: Comerica Bank, HNTB, City of Dallas-Office of Economic Development, Dallas County Community College District, Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Dallas Independent School District, FirstSouthwest, Oncor and Texas Rangers. Additional corporate sponsors included: American Airlines, Ben E. Keith, Contran Corporation, Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau, IBM, Kiewit/Stacy & Witbeck, Methodist Health Systems, OMNI Dallas Hotel, Southwest Securities FSB, TEI Program/Construction Management, Inc., Texas A&M University at Commerce and Trinity Infrastructure, LLC.

Following an Invocation by Friendship West associate pastor, Rev. William White and a Welcome by 2006 DBCC Board chair, Tammy Demery, the evening’s program kicked off with the presentation of several prestigious awards.

The 2012 Connie Davis Roseborough Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to Mr. Jerry Haynes, president and CEO of Haynes Electric Company; the 2012 Member of the Year Award was presented to Mr. Walter Furnace of the American Airlines Federal Credit Union; the 2012 Small Business of the Year Award was presented to BMA Security Systems, Incorporated owned by longtime DBCC member and current board member, Mr. Samuel Brown, president and CEO; and the 2012 Corporation of the Year Award was presented to the Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau (DCVB) (Ms. Hattie Hill, chair of the DCVB and Mr. Phillip Jones, president and CEO received the award on behalf of the DCVB).

A special presentation of the 2012 Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce / Thomas L. Houston Community Service Award was presented to Mr. Gilbert Gerst of Bank of Texas. Gerst was honored for a lifetime of work, dedication and contributions towards the betterment and civic advancement of Dallas’ African-American community.

The highlight of the evening was the keynote address by George C. Fraser, chairman and CEO of FraserNet, Incorporated and the founder of the PowerNetworking Conference, which is the largest gathering of Black professionals, business owners and community leaders in the nation and was held in Dallas this past June and will be held in Dallas again in 2013. Mr. Fraser addressed the crowd on various subjects including the need for African-Americans to support their own and that Black businesses should strive to become the number one employer of Black people. He also spoke on how the Black community was increasingly disconnected and that only by reconnecting can we concentrate our power and become the “power brokers we were created to be.”

Another highlight of the program was the DBCC Installation of 2013 Board Officers, with the oath being administered by Honorable Brenda Hull-Thompson, Judge of Dallas County Probate Court No. 1.

To end the evening, a special presentation was made to current DBCC Board Chair, Sonya Hoskins by former board chair Jerry Haynes, on behalf of the chamber, to thank her for her outstanding leadership role in 2012 and to recognize her for her many years of loyal service and dedication to the Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce.
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