July 9, 2020

Dear Fellow Members,

I would like to begin by hoping that all of our member businesses are staying well and not having to deal directly with the coronavirus with their families and friends. If need be, you are in my prayers for a speedy recovery. In regard to recovery, it is great to see so many member businesses, and especially restaurants, opening up and hopefully doing better and getting back to business. Our Chamber is here for you, and please just give us a call if you need us for any matters.

I am humbled to have been elected President of this great Chamber and will do my utmost to keep your confidence and trust for the ensuing year. I also at this time want to extend all of our thanks to Immediate Past President Jamie Bogenshutz for her two years of service and wish her well in her future endeavors.

We installed our new Executive Board and Board of Directors on June 25, 2020 at Klestinec Park with social distancing and other safety measures, like masks, in place so that all were safe.My thanks to Town Supervisor Joe Saladino and NYS Assemblyman John Mikulin for installing our team as needed.

We then proceeded to American Beauty Bistro for the outdoor Luncheon and we had a great time. I was able to give padfolios to all of the Board Members to use, and I also announced all of my appointments at that time. One of the appointments was our new Legal Counsel Mr. Michael Venditto, who will do a great job for us, and he will also chair the Government Affairs Committee as well. My thanks to Michael and all of the Committee Chairs for agreeing to serve during my administration. Thanks also to Past Legal Counsel Joanne Hawthorne for her work, and we wish her well in the future.

We also kicked off our “Feed a Precinct” program, which is funded by member donations. We gave the first edition to the Seventh Precinct and had a great time donating to them as well. We will keep the outreach going, and if any member business wants to donate, please contact our Treasurer Greg Massimi and he will assist you. In addition, if any member restaurants want to host a luncheon, please contact the Chamber office and Shelley will forward the information to the committee of Robin Hepworth and Karen Gawrych.

Special thanks to Past Chamber President Gary Slavin for filing all of the needed paperwork for the PPP Program and other grants, as we are now receiving those funds and using them to our benefit as a Chamber. Revenue and resources are now important. As a reminder, if you as a business have not paid your dues yet, please remit to the office as we are trying to keep all members on the rolls for our benefit. We appreciate all of the members’ cooperation with this, if able to do so. New members are welcome, and we would appreciate if you would ask another business to join our Chamber as well, as this keeps us strong.

Congratulations to Carol Leff on being chosen as the Chamber’s Businessperson of the Year. She has been a Chamber Board Member for years and is more than deserving, as she is a class act and will represent us well in that role. Please offer her congratulations when you see her.

On a sad note, we had to cancel our Annual Massapequa Community Street Festival this year due to COVID-19, and this of course hurts our income side of the budget. I have called a special Board Meeting in July to discuss income options. We will remain diligent and we will get through this together. If anybody has any ideas, please contact me at (516) 633 – 1435, and I will speak with you directly.

I must also commend our Executive Coordinator Shelley Mordowitz, as she has been invaluable to me in the transition of leadership, and we are lucky to have her as the administrator in our office. With her help, we also reached out to all of our members, and that is crucial to our success going forward. All have been okay, and they were glad to hear from us as a Chamber.

Finally, my thanks to the Board for all of the support to date. I look forward to leading this great Chamber and as my Late Mother used to say, “It’s nice to be important but it’s more important to be nice.” I welcome any and all businesses to contact us anytime if need be and I, or we, will respond.

Keith Wilson
President, Massapequa Chamber of Commerce