A Celebration of a Great Year!


A Celebration of a Great Year!
Added on December 14, 2023 by Amanda Duncan to Chamber News

A Celebration of a Great Year!

The Hampton Roads Chamber celebrated an outstanding 2023 during our Annual Meeting celebration. Our members joined together at the Virginia Beach Convention Center for this exciting event full of Chamber accomplishments, 2024 updates, and a fantastic keynote speech from Senator Mark Warner.

“We have a great Chamber,” Senator Warner shared to our room full of business professionals as he thanked Chamber President and CEO, Bryan K. Stephens for his exceptional leadership. The theme of leadership continued as Senator Warner reflected on his time in various public offices since 2002 while he thanked Hampton Roads elected officials for being the “heart and soul of Hampton Roads.” He continued to share about the growth in our region stating, “The Hampton Roads area has the freshest market and greatest capital innovation in the world.”

From one celebration to another, Chamber President & CEO, Bryan K. Stephens shared, “This Chamber is healthy and on the move. 2023 was a banner year for the Hampton Roads Chamber.” Bryan reflected on the past year during his President’s Report and shared events to come such as the 2024 Leadership Exchange in Tampa Bay. Our 2023 Board Chair, Jim Bibbs, shared thanks to the Chamber and the business professionals in the room saying, “It was my honor to serve as chair.” In Chamber tradition, Jim then passed the gavel to the 2024 chair, Dawn Glynn, President & Chief Experience Officer at Townebank.

During the event, recognition was given to Chamber programs and affiliates for their major accomplishments during 2023. tHRive, the Chamber’s young professional group received recognition for its fantastic programming and massive efforts to engage young professionals in the Hampton Roads region and congratulations were awarded to the LEAD757 class of 2023 for their dedication to leadership and service to the community. Bryan shared that the partnership between VOLUNTEER Hampton Roads and the Chamber was “the perfect fit” and thanked President and CEO, Stephanie Gorham, for her many years of service to the organization and community. Recognition continued for the Hampton Roads Small Business Development Center. “We are basically a small business chamber,” Bryan shared as he congratulated the organization for helping almost 800 small business clients during the past year.

Congratulations were also in order for three individuals who went above and beyond for the Chamber in 2023. Misty Curtis of iFLY Virginia Beach Indoor Skydiving was presented with the 2023 Ambassador of the Year award for her dedication to mentoring new members as well as helping at many Chamber events.  Cathy Lewis of Lewis Communications Group was named as our 2023 Volunteer of the Year for her unwavering dedication to the Chamber. And finally, our Senior Member Development Manager, Diane Raihle was recognized for being awarded with her 5th Lifetime Achievement Sales Award by the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives for bringing in over 1 million dollars in membership sales.

In closing, the 2023 Annual Meeting was a celebration of not only the successful year we had but of the many accomplishments are business community saw as well!

We would like to extend thanks to our Annual Meeting sponsors for supporting this great event!

Presenting Sponsor: Old Point National Bank
Host Sponsor: Virginia Beach Convention Center
Member Spotlight Sponsors: Chesapeake Regional Healthcare, BayPort Credit Union
Gold Sponsors: Sentara Healthcare, Carnival Cruise Line
Silver Sponsors: Langley Federal Credit Union, ADP, Dominion Energy, and Hampton Roads Workforce Council
Bronze Sponsors: Wilbanks Smith & Thomas Asset Management, LLC, Bon Secours, Bank of America, Norfolk International Airport
Media Sponsor: Stellar Exposures
Video Sponsor: Two Twelve Media
Experience Sponsor: Tidewater Photobooth Co.
Decor Sponsor: Premier Events of Virginia Inc.
AV Sponsor: Productive AV