Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce

Supporting, advocating, and promoting our local business-members in the heart of the Florida Keys!

Category: CEO Corner (page 1 of 3)

TBH Construction

Introducing the New Chamber Member: TBH Construction

TBH Construction works with all types of general contracting, from small to large jobs. Established in 2001, the company specializes in general building, drywall, stucco, siding, and total remodels. Owner Tom Harmon says their key to success is quality and service.

Right now in this time of need, after Hurricane Irma, Contractors are in high demand. We thank you all for coming to the keys and helping us Rebuild #Keysstrong

TBH Construction

Marathon Chamber

Hello 2018

GOOD RIDDANCE 2017

I hope you all had a great Holiday and New Year’s, here is to 2018! Usually in my January letter I discuss how great the previous year was, our accomplishments,
etc. After Irma, it’s (admittedly so) difficult to do this. However, now that we are passed the worst of it; we can focus on the finish
line, and yes I can see the light ahead! Finish line meaning getting the rest of the debris picked up and hauled away, getting locals back into
their homes, and seeing businesses and resorts that are still down due to damages back up and running. Our focus has to be a strong finish
so we can push forward and step into the light. It will take discipline, patience, and persistence.

 

Discipline, patience, and persistence:

• Discipline: understanding that this high-season and summer will not yield revenues like years past. So we must budget accordingly; please know this doesn’t mean making cuts that will hurt your business, productivity, and quality. Think “efficiency” rather than just reductions. Think of lean, smart, and innovative ways to keep things afloat and running. On a personal level it may mean postponing that big vacation or addition to your home till next year; or the purchase of luxury items that are “wants” and not “needs.”
• Patience: things will improve and get better. “The new normal” as locals refer to post Irma will eventually revert back to just normal. Once our islands are back and looking great, all businesses up and running, and all services available for visitors and locals; we will get back to “normal.” But have patience, don’t rush the process in ways that may cause unintended consequences. Remain persistent, tenacious and what not, but have patience.
• Persistence: speaking of, be persistent and tenacious. Work hard, don’t give up or give in. We are a tight-knit community so please reach out for assistance or help. Your Marathon Chamber is here for you no matter what! Contact me anytime, please! There are other great and free resources out there for you as well and we/I am happy to connect you to any of them (financial, and/or business guidance, counseling, marketing/advertising/PR, etc.). One of my favorite attributes Keys business owners have is stubbornness. Use this in an effective, efficient, and positive manner to get through the home stretch of Irma’s recovery.

2018 begins:

As 2018 begins we again have high goals and standards to ensure that we are best serving you and our other 575+ business members. We have again budgeted to award $10,000 in continuing education scholarships to Marathon Chamber members as well as to host a number of educational seminars to help further expand your knowledge, skills, and abilities. We will also award our Business Beautification Grants again in 2018 so please keep a watchful eye out for this and other programs so you can take full advantage of your membership with us.

Thank you again for being a member of The Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce in 2017, we look forward to again serving you in 2018. If you have any questions about your membership renewal invoice please call us anytime. Want to know more about what the Marathon Chamber can do for you and your business? Please call us to set up an orientation/member benefits meeting; we will travel to your place of business if need be. Our mission is to serve you; and also I look forward to doing just that yet again in 2018.

Hears to a healthy, safe, and fruitful 2018!

Daniel Samess

Daniel Samess, M.S. • Chief Executive Officer • Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce • 12222 Overseas Hwy, Marathon, FL 33050 • W: (305) 743-5417 / F: (305) 289-0183
email: ceo@floridakeysmarathon.comMarathon Chamberwww.RelocateToTheFloridaKeys.comwww.MarathonSeafoodFestival.com

TendBar.Us

Business Spotlight: Commerce Corner

TendBar.Us

We’re committed to delivering the alcohol and other provisions of your choosing. To the place you request within a reasonable time frame and with a reasonable delivery charge.

After spending time within the corporate world and also getting my business degree, I decided to make a change in my life. Start my own company in a city that I have had the opportunity to visit multiple times. There were a few times where I had wished I hadn’t needed to make a trip to get groceries. Or alcohol for the condo I had rented for vacation.  Inspiration struck on a cold winter’s day while living in Boston.

I saw a travel advertisement for Key West. Remembering my experiences and what some people have told me regarding difficulties of getting their groceries and alcohol. Especially when not having a vehicle to get them.  At this moment, my vision for the company morphed. From being a distributor of alcohol to liquor stores and bars into an idea where I would be a delivery services for both vacationers and locals in Key West and the lower Keys up to Marathon.  Whether you are in the lower Keys for vacation, or a local pressed for time, please consider TendBar to deliver groceries, alcohol, and also other provisions to your location.

Tendbar

Tendbar

Irma Who?

Happy Holidays to you, our valued member! The New Year is around the corner, so is high-season; which I know all our businesses are exceptionally excited about post Irma. This off-season was like no other.  While we are still recovering physically and emotionally from Irma, it is exciting to have some holiday cheer and tourists getting ready to flock to our islands.

December marks the end of our fiscal year; so please be sure to keep a look out in your mailbox or inbox for your annual Chamber Membership Renewal invoice. Should you have any questions about it please contact us as we are happy to help as always. This year we are offering two options regarding your annual dues. If you are able to pay your 2018 dues in full by Jan. 12th we will deduct 4% from your dues amount. If you cannot pay by then we are happy to provide an extension until March 30th, but without the 4% savings. I understand the savings is not a significant amount, but if it helps and further encourages you to pay sooner than later then it will be a win-win for you and your chamber.

Other than Irma 2017 was another positive and productive year for your Marathon Chamber of Commerce! One area I am very proud of is our annual programs we have expanded and contributed to. Why, because they directly affect you, our business members and our local economy. In 2017 we again awarded $20,000 in business beautification grants; we awarded $10,000 in continuing education grants to twenty-six (26) business-members; awarded $5,000 in scholarships to five (5) MHS seniors as well as $5,000 to the Marathon Take Stock in Children program. Lastly awarded over $5,000 in donations to key local not for profits that benefit our businesses and local economy. (FIRM, FL Keys Days, Middle Keys Habitat for Humanity, Fishermen’s Community Hospital Foundation, Pigeon Key Foundation, and more).

As we move into 2018 I look forward to moving forward, seeing more of our hotels, businesses, and homes get fully repaired and back online. I look forward to normalcy and to working with our City Council on more workforce housing solutions; as well as to working with our TDC on informing visitors that we are up and running and getting better and better with every week that passes. I will look forward to seeing our businesses make up revenues and get back to a healthy and prosperous position, and most importantly helping you and our business community getting to that point.

The Marathon Chamber Board of Directors, staff, and I are all committed to working for and with you and your staff. Please be sure to get involved in our beneficial programs; ask questions, and let your Marathon Chamber work for you. Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year’s later this month; be safe in your travels, and see you at our December events and then in 2018!
Most Respectfully,

SBA Bridge & Disaster Loans

SBA BRIDGE & DISASTER LOANS

Florida SBDC at Florida Keys Community College, along with your Marathon Chamber of Commerce is currently coordinating the Emergency Bridge Loan Program funded by the State of Florida for small businesses.

These are loans intended for operating capital; $50,000 max, six month term, and also no-interest. Application deadline is October 31st. We are also assisting clients with SBA Disaster Loan Applications. Those loans max out at 2 million for both damage to property and economic injury. If you need help for your small business, please register with us via the link below. No cost of our one-on-one consulting. Our program is funded by the SBA, the State of Florida, and Florida Keys Community College. To register please click on the following link; we serve all businesses in our region from Key Largo to Key West.

SBDC Website

Daniel Samess
ceo@floridakeysmarathon.com / 305-849-9688
Kelly Penwell (SBDC Regional Director)
kelly.penwell@floridasbdc.org

OTHER IMPORTANT INFO:
• FEMA Disaster Assistance • SBA Disaster Assistance • SBA Disaster Loan Programs Available
SBA & FEMA Disaster Recovery Center: Open daily from 8:00AM – 8:00PM
Marathon Community Park
3911 Overseas Hwy
Marathon, FL 33050

SBA BRC (Business Recovery Center; now open in Marathon): Open daily from 9AM – 6PM
Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce
12222 Overseas Hwy
Marathon, FL 33050
• Also contact our local banks (First State Bank, Keys Federal Credit Union, BB&T, Iberia, Centennial, etc.) about personal loans being offered to help you recover and rebuild, many are offering great programs in the wake of Irma.

FREE EVENT:

Legal Help for FEMA registration, Insurance Claims, and also More…

When: Saturday, Oct. 7th from 11:00AM – 4:00PM
Where: Lighthouse Grille Restaurant (behind the Hyatt Place, Marathon)

Disaster

October & Hurricane Irma

CEO’S CORNER

Chamber Members, Friends, Colleagues: 

I pray this finds you, your loved ones, friends, and also colleagues in good health post Irma!  It will be a difficult path and time ahead, but I have the utmost confidence in our City, businesses, Tourist Development Council, and YOU that we will rebuild and recover; and probably quicker than most will anticipate.

Please know your Marathon Chamber and also Board of Directors are here to help and assist as needed! Currently we are focusing on connecting you all to disaster loans and also resources. Also planning on hosting a workshop (stay tuned on date and location) with people to help/assist with SBA and FEMA benefits and insurances.  We look forward to helping our community recover one step at a time, while moving day by day!

Irma Disaster help

Important links & info:

——————————————————————

For more info on joining the Marathon Chamber, or know someone who needs to join, please call/email us at (305) 743-5417 / CEO@floridakeysmarathon.com.  

Remember to call/email your Marathon Chamber for all your business or travel needs, and also anything Marathon!  We take great pride in providing quality services to our business-members as well as our visitors.

The Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce & Board of Directors are committed to promoting and informing our businesses as well as our great destination!
Sincerely,
Daniel Samess, M.S.
(305) 743-5417
ceo@floridakeysmarathon.com
www.FloridaKeysMarathon.com
www.RelocateToTheFloridaKeys.com
Seafood Festival

August 2017 CEO Letter

Dear Marathon Chamber of Commerce Member

While lobster mini-season keeps our hotel rooms, restaurants, and businesses busy; we are all glad when it’s over! We have a lot of exciting initiatives going on over the next few months, since we aim to keep you, our valued business-member in-the-know here is what we are working on.

Seminar #2 on Cyber Security has been cancelled.

First, we have the second of three business-seminars set for this month. As you know education is a huge part of what your Marathon Chamber does. We understand the value of education, and how improving our skills and abilities can lead to improved business performance, profitability, and also longevity. Our Aug. 14th seminar focuses on Cyber Security for Small Businesses. No business is immune to online hackers and criminals seeking to steal your, and/or your customers’ information and data. Plus your liability insurances will not cover any losses from cyber security breaches. We hope you will attend to learn how to better protect yourself, your customers, and your business. Please sign up for this month’s seminar, you will not be disappointed (flyer included in this month’s newsletter).

Annual Chamber Board of Director Elections

August is also when we begin preparations for our annual Chamber Board of Director elections. If you are interested in running for a seat on the Marathon Chamber Board of Directors, please email or contact me to receive an application (also see flyer insert). Elections take place in early September and this year we have six (6) open seats on the Board. This is a great way to help lead the overall direction of your Marathon Chamber and help to have a real impact on our business community.

BIG Raffle Contest

Finally, this month signifies the beginning of our annual BIG Raffle Contest. Winners will be drawn at our annual Awards Banquet on Friday, Oct. 6th at Hawks Cay Resort (please save the date). Again we are offering a vacation package for two (winner can choose from 4 vacation options) as our grand prize ($3,000+ value), or if a vacation is not your cup of tea, the grand prize winner can choose a cash prize of $2,000.00. Other prizes include a stay at Hawks Cay Resort with spa for two, as well as $100 restaurant gift certificates, a staycation in Key West, and more. See flyer insert for more info please. As always tickets are only $25.00/each and we will only sell a max of 500 tickets. Proceeds help to fund our annual Academic and Continuing Education Scholarships to Marathon students and also our business-members.

Have a great August everyone; please be sure to get your raffle tickets and to sign up for our Aug. 14th business-seminar; and be safe out there getting those delicious Florida Lobsters after full season opens up August 6th!

Most Respectfully,

Daniel Samess, CEO

Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce

(305) 743-5417

ceo@floridakeysmarathon.com

Website

www.RelocateToTheFloridaKeys.com

www.MarathonSeafoodFest.com

August

August

KEYS TOURISM ADVISORY

KEYS TOURISM ADVISORY    July 31, 2017 • 10:00 a.m.

News and Information from the Monroe County Tourist Development Council

Special Filming Event Scheduled Tuesday, Aug. 1

A film production company is planning to shoot portions of a new television commercial Tuesday, Aug. 1, which is to likely result in brief traffic delays that day between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m.

The Enthusiast Network, Inc. is to have support of Monroe County Sheriff’s Office deputies to help control and direct traffic between mile marker (MM) 65.5 and also 50.8, according to production officials. No lane closures are scheduled.

Aerial and also ground-level driving footage is planned to be shot for Lamborghini car company.

Motorists planning to use the Overseas Highway during the film production window should allow extra travel time to arrive at their destinations.

Filming is subject to change due to inclement weather or other unforeseen circumstances.

KEYS TOURISM ADVISORY    July 31, 2017 • 8:00 a.m.

News and Information from the Monroe County Tourist Development Council

Road Work to Continue at Key West’s Triangle 

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) will continue work at the “Triangle,” where US 1 meets North Roosevelt Blvd. at the entrance of Key West, according to FDOT public information personnel.

Scheduled to be some night time lane closures between 9 p.m. and also 6 a.m., in order to remove existing concrete and place new sidewalks for the relocated crosswalk.

The outer lane, outbound will be the first to be closed at night. Later, the outer inbound lane will be affected.

This project is expected to improve the traffic flow for the turn lanes, and includes the installation of a new traffic control cabinet, pedestrian signals, milling and asphalting, concrete modifications on the island and new roadway striping.

Therefore work is expected to take up to 2 months.

CANCELLED Seminar #2 Cyber Security

CEO’S CORNER

Seminar Cyber Security CANCELLED

Chamber Members, Friends, Colleagues:  Please consider attending our upcoming Business Seminar Classes which are a great opportunity for you and also your employees to learn about:
  1. August 14th: CANCELLED Cyber security to protect your online information, customer info/data, websites, etc.
  2. September 11th: How to read and utilize financial reports to make good business decisions.

Have a great and safe weekend everyone.  Lobster Mini Season is next week, please be safe out there; ensure all your gear is in good working order, your lobster and fishing licenses, etc.  May the lobster be with you!

To sign up & RSVP please contact Erika at your Marathon Chamber: 305-743-5417 / Erika@floridakeysmarathon.com
Click here for PDF of Seminars Flyer

Cyber Security for Small Business:
Monday, August 14th
This class will provide small business owners tools to protect company
and customer data and assets. Therefore using these tools, businesses can avoid
being victims to ransom terrorists.
Steve Prettyman has over 20 years experience in the IT industry and
also as a college professor. Over the years, he has taught classes in
programming, mobile app development, web design and also cyber security.
Steve is also an author of two PHP programming textbooks and also a third
is in development. After 40+ years in Atlanta, he returned to South
Florida in 2016 accepting the role as Computer Science Chair at FKCC.

July 2017 CEO Letter

July 2017 CEO Letter:

SCHOOL IS OUT, BUT NOT AT YOUR MARATHON CHAMBER

Join June Membership Drive

Join June Membership Drive

School’s out for summer (as Alice Cooper said), but that doesn’t mean we stop learning and trying to educate and empower you, our valued
member! I am very excited for the three (3) educational seminars we have planned for you this summer and fall. Each class is specific to
local business’ needs that will help to further improve your marketing, security of valuable data, and to better understand and utilize financial
reports to make sound business decisions.

Seminars:

First class focuses on social media marketing. It takes place on July 10th from 8:30AM – 11:30AM at the Hyatt Place conference room. We hope to see you there as this will be a great class. Also opportunity to learn about how to effectively market your business, products, and also services to current and potential customers online via Facebook and other widely used social media platforms.

Second class will focus on cyber security for your business, and how to protect important data, customer data, etc. that you may store on your computer, point of sale system, etc. This class will take place on August 14th (same time and location).

Third and final class will focus on cash flow management and effective use of financial reports for your business. Here you will learn how to construct, read, and effectively use financial reports to help your business survive and also thrive. This class will be on September 11th, again same time and also location as the previous two.

We hope you will join us for one, two, or all three classes; as always chamber members receive a discounted rate. If you sign up for all three classes you receive an even more heavily discounted rate. All classes include coffee, beverages, fruit and pastries. Please contact us your Marathon Chamber to RSVP (305-743-5417; Erika@floridakeysmarathon.com).

Board elections, and annual Awards & Installation Banquet

Lastly, we are beginning to plan ahead for our upcoming Board elections, and annual Awards & Installation Banquet (save the date please: October 6th at Hawks Cay Resort).

We recently awarded (10) ten Business Beautification Grants to local business-members as well. Our education committee Chairman TJ Patterson announced our five MHS senior scholarship recipients, each received $1,000.00 from your Marathon Chamber of Commerce.

Congrats to: Carlie Meehan, Theodore Violissi III, Amanda Ban, Alyssa Turner, and Rachel Philcox!

Have a great, safe, and happy 4th of July everyone; see you all at Sombrero Beach for the amazing Marathon Rotary Beach Party and City of Marathon Fireworks Show. Be sure to contact us for any business assistance, needs, or also services you may need either directly from us or from someone else we can connect you with. Our doors are always open and no request is out of bounds.

Most Respectfully,

Daniel Samess, CEO

Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce

(305) 743-5417

ceo@floridakeysmarathon.com

Website

www.RelocateToTheFloridaKeys.com

www.MarathonSeafoodFest.com

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