CCGM Looks Forward to Healthy New Year

 The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Milford welcomes the 2016 Executive Board of Directors: (Back Row L to R) Christine Rust, Treasurer; Alicia Hollis,Secretary. (Front Row L to R) Cheryl Doucette, Vice President; Terri Favata, President.

The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Milford welcomes the 2016 Executive Board of Directors: (Back Row L to R) Christine Rust, Treasurer; Alicia Hollis,Secretary. (Front Row L to R) Cheryl Doucette, Vice President; Terri Favata, President.

By Terry Rogers

The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Milford is looking forward to helping many community members get “healthier” in 2016 with a new program called The Biggest Loser Community Challenge, which will kick off in February. The event is a national event where chambers throughout the country sign up teams to be guided in eight weekly challenges in order to promote a healtheri lifestyle. The participants will be guided by past contestants of the television show, The Biggest Loser, while also receiving weekly motivation and nutrition tips from trainer, Dolvett Quince.

“We are just kicking off the program,” Jo Schmeiser, Executive Director of CCGM said. “We hope to have teams signed up quickly. Our goal is that people will combine the Biggest Loser contest with programs offered by chamber members such as our fitness clubs and nutritional companies. Our chamber is competing with other chambers. Currently I know that Middletown Chamber is participating but am not sure what others in Delaware have agreed to the challenge.” Ms. Scmeiser said teams of four will participate in the challenge with each team paying $100 to join. Businesses can also sponsor teams of employees for the challenge. Prizes are awarded each week and national recognition will be given to chambers whose members are the most successful.

The Biggest Loser Community Challenge is only one of many events planned by CCGM for the upcoming year, Ms. Schmeiser said. CCGM will be directed by a completely new Executive Board. Terri Favata will lead the organization as President with Cheryl Doucette acting as Vice-President. Christine Rust will serve as Treasurer and Alicia Hollis as Secretary. The year will start off with the Annual Legislative Luncheon with legislators from the city, county and state discussing issues facing citizens for 2016. The luncheon is planned for January 13, 2016 at 11 AM at the Rookery North.

“The Chamber will continue to give back to the community,” Ms. Schmeiser said. “Last year, we gave over $16,000 to charitable organizations throughout the Milford area. In addition, we plan to host workshops to help members develop their social media, website and marketing throughout the year. The Young Professionals Group, now known as PRO for “Professionals Reaching Out” will host morning meetings once each month in the Chamber conference from beginning Wednesday, January 27.”

Ms. Schmeiser said that the “Red White and Brew 5k” will be held in the same area the race was held over the past two years but will be held earlier in the month on Saturday, June 11. The Sunrise Seminars, which were held in the Chamber Conference Room, will now be held at Heritage of Milford. Popular events such as the Awards Dinner, Mixer/Expo, Girls Night Out, Golf Classic, Riverwalk Freedom Festival and the Holiday Auction and Tastes of Milford will return for 2016 as will the Business Mixers and Quarterly Membership luncheons.

Ms. Schmeiser said that the chamber offers many benefits to members that encourage economic development in Milford. She said that through the Southern Delaware Tourism and Kent County Tourism Board, she works to promote Milford as a destination not only for visitors but for businesses as well.

“We are adding a new and exciting focus on economic development that will be introduced in February,” Ms. Schmeiser said. “In addition, I will be working with the Greater Kent Committee, the City of Milford, Downtown Milford Inc., Delaware Tourism, attending many meetings workshops and conferences that focus on economic development. We serve the entire Milford area, not just downtown, but we are thrilled that Milford has such an active main street organization that is supported heavily by the City of Milford and works to bring businesses to the downtown area.”

Ms. Schmeiser said that the biggest challenge faced by the chamber, like with most non-profit organizations, is finding volunteers for the many events they sponsor each year. She said there are many volunteer opportunities available and that CCGM tries to make volunteering rewarding and fun for those who help bring the events to life. Anyone who wants to volunteer can contact CCGM by calling 302-422-3344 or visiting them online at