Welcome to our Centennial Anniversary year! 

On this day, February 1, in 1919, the charter was signed, founding what was called The Hagerstown Chamber of Commerce. Times, obviously, were a lot different than they are today in 2019.

It was the year that an act of the United States Congress established most of the Grand Canyon as a United States National Park.

The US Congress approved the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which guaranteed voting for women, and sent it to the individual states for ratificati on.

Einstein used 1919's full solar eclipse to prove that Newton's theory of space was wrong and gravity can bend spacetime, causing light to take a different path.

The Cincinatti Reds were World Series Champions.   Life expectancy for males was 53.5 years, and for females, 56 years.   The average cost of a movie ticket was $0.07, while the minimum weekly food budget for a man, wife and three children was an average of $11.

A day's stay at the lush Dagmar Hotel on the corner of Summit Ave. & Antietam St. was only $1.00.  Nearby, The Hagerstown Shoe and Legging Co. was a popular shopping destination in Downtown Hagerstown. Near the legendary Maryland Theatre, the store was championed by its Vice President Roger Whipple.

Born in 1876, Whipple moved to Hagerstown in 1913, from his native Salem, Massachusetts. A descendant of the Whipple family who helped settle Ipswich, Mass., in 1633 (The John Whipple Home, built in 1640, is open to the public, still in Ipswich).

He was a member of St. John's Episcopal Church. In 1919, he became the first President and Chairman of the Hagerstown Chamber of Commerce. Additionally, he was a onetime President of the Washington County Historical Society, and of the Hagerstown Assembly Club.

Roger Whipple passed away on March 9, 1962, and his final resting place is at the deeply-historical Rose Hill Cemetery.

We like to think that Mr. Whipple and all of our past Board Chairs over our monumental 100 years would be proud of the progress made within what's now known as the Washington County Chamber of Commerce.

President & Chairman of the Board, 1919


Chairman of the Board, 2019

Read About Upcoming Centennial Events Below!
Thank you for your Chamber support,

In This Issue
Welcome Our New Members
Give a warm welcome to our new January members
Anytime Fitness
19405 Emerald Sq., Suite 1500
Hagerstown, MD

Building Systems
16619 Hunters Green Pkwy.
Hagerstown, MD

d'Vinci Interactive
28 S. Potomac St., 4th Floor
Hagerstown, MD

Hagerstown Infusion
1829 Howell Rd., Suite 2B
Hagerstown, MD

LewLew Energy
12120 Plum Orchard Dr., Suite 145
Silver Spring, MD

Neptune Logistics, Inc.
19813 Leitersburg Pike, Suite 220
Hagerstown, MD

The Salvation Army
541 George St.
Hagerstown, MD

Centennial Events Not to Be Missed
Join Us for these Celebratory Centennial Memories

February B.A.S.H. (Business and Social Hour)
Thursday, February 21st, 5-7pm
Washington County Free Library, 100 S. Potomac St., Hagerstown, MD

Formerly titled "Business After Hours", our popular monthly mixer is making the change to its new name, "B.A.S.H. (Business and Social Hour)" beginning this month. This gathering will be extra special as it's our commemorative Centennial version of this networking event. Join us for special acknowledgements, door prizes, our Chamber Prize Drawing (at $500), and more! 

Culture & Cocktails at the Washington County Historical Society
Friday, April 26th, 6-8pm
The Miller House Museum, 135 W. Washington St., Hagerstown, MD

Enjoy a drink and have a think! At Culture & Cocktails, a lecture program at the Miller House Museum, they tackle a historical topic with the help of a little liquid fortitude.

For 100 years, the Washington County Chamber of Commerce has been fostering and promoting businesses in the region. President Paul Frey will be sharing stories of the Chamber's many accomplishments over the last century.

The featured cocktail will be: the Champagne Cocktail. What better to celebrate 100 years of progress than the classic anniversary drink?

Your ticket price will include your first drink, and refills will be available for a small fee. This event is for adults ages 21 and older, please! For more information, please don't hesitate to get in touch!

Chamber Bash
Saturday, May 18th, 6pm
Rider Jet Center, 18421 Henson Blvd., Hagerstown, MD

Join us for this ONCE IN A LIFETIME event commemorating 100 years of the Washington County Chamber of Commerce!  Enjoy a night of live music from Sticktime (classic rock cover band), dancing, Taste of the Chamber (featuring food & beverage from Chamber members), tip jar,s 50/50 & more!  $60/ticket, $100/couple


100th Annual Meeting
Thursday, September 26th, 5pm
Fountain Head Country Club, 13316 Fountain Head Rd., Hagerstown, MD

A members-only dinner event celebrating not just the accomplishments made by our Chamber (and membership) throughout fiscal year 2019, but also honoring the past 100 years of this important institution. We'll also celebrate the beginning of fiscal year 2020 with the passing of the gavel from current Board Chair Keith Grunow to Incoming Chair Gary Hayes. 

Members Making News
Find Out What's New with Some of Our Members! 

Leadership Washington County Names Christina Willams Director of Graduate Engagement

Leadership Washington County (LWC), a local leadership development program and non-profit, has named Christina Williams as their full-time Director of Graduate Engagement. 

Mrs. Williams, who had been Executive Director of the Washington County Public Schools Education Foundation, will be in charge of planning and administering programs and generating funding to develop graduate engagement. LWC began its graduate membership and graduate programming three years ago and will continue to engage graduates through innovative programming and promote their volunteer work in our community.  

"With over 850 graduates, LWC has a strong legacy and notable alumni. We want to ensure the strong connections formed within leadership classes continues beyond graduation and that graduates stay connected to one another, LWC, and the community through service opportunities," commented Dr. Tara Sargent, Executive Director of LWC. "Christina's experience working for a non-profit, fundraising, and coordinating events and engaging volunteers will greatly benefit LWC, our graduates, and our community." 

Mrs. Williams has a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance from George Washington University and a Master's of Business Administration with a concentration in Management from Mount St. Mary's University. She graduated from LWC in 2012 as a member of Class 25 and since then has served on the LWC Alumni as well as an active Graduate Member. 

SEK, CPAs & Advisors Announces Manager Promotions

The Members of  SEK, CPAs & Advisors are pleased to announce the following staff members were promoted to Manager effective January 1, 2019.

William H. Souders, CPA  works in the Hagerstown office where he serves business clients in a variety of sizes and industries, working closely with nonprofit, governmental, and for-profit entities. His expertise includes performing single audits and financial statement audits for nonprofits. Souders graduated summa cum laude from Shippensburg University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Accounting. He started as an intern at SEK in 2004 and became a full-time employee thereafter.

Daryl L. Staley, CPA, MBA  is part of SEK's Accounting, Consulting, and Tax Services Department. He works with closely-held businesses and individuals focusing on tax planning and compliance, financial statement preparation, and general business consulting. Daryl also works in a variety of industries, including construction, retail, manufacturing, professional services, and restaurants. He graduated summa cum laude from Shippensburg University with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and a Master in Business Administration. Daryl first interned at SEK in 2012 and was hired as a full-time employee in 2013. He is based in the York office.

Evan M. Wabrick, CPA, MBA  works in the Tax Department and assists the Accounting Services Department on various bookkeeping jobs. He works with clients in a variety of industries, including medical practices, construction, manufacturing, retail and distribution, real estate, financial services, and individuals. Evan earned both a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, majoring in Accounting, and a Master in Business Administration from Shippensburg University. He joined SEK in 2014 after two internships with the firm and works in the Carlisle office.

Baxter Group, Inc. Announces its 2019 Breathe Healthy Initiative

I n response to rising concerns about indoor air and environmental quality,  Baxter Group, Inc. is launching its "2019 Breathe Healthy Initiative". The goal is to provide our community with education and information to protect ourselves, our families, our employees, or our building occupants from indoor environmental contaminants. 

Indoor pollutants such as asbestos, mold, lead-based paint, radon, and a variety of indoor environmental contaminants impact the health of thousands of people every year. Small preventative measures can make a huge difference in the health of all indoor environment and those that reside in it. This Initiative is intended to inspire and motivate us to seek preventative maintenance and address areas that could impact the health of our environment. 

Most all commercial buildings and many homes built before 1980 contain some form of asbestos-containing material. Painted building components in many homes and buildings built before 1978 contain lead. One out of every 15 homes in the US experience elevated radon levels, the second leading cause of lung cancer in our nation. Mold does not need water to propagate. Humidity levels above 60% provide the perfect environment for the growth of mold. Whether we live in a new home or older building, indoor environmental conditions can impact the health of the building and its occupants.

Understanding and controlling some of the common pollutants found in homes, schools and offices has become ever more important since we are now spending much of our time indoors. Pollutants can include chemicals, gases, and living organisms such as mold and pests. Some pollutants can cause health issues such as sore eyes, burning in the nose and throat, headaches, nausea, and fatigue. Other pollutants can cause or worsen allergies, respiratory illnesses, heart disease, and cancer. Some pollutants can be especially harmful to children, the elderly, or those with compromised immune systems. 

Simple steps can be taken to improve our air quality and reduce their health risks. Examples would include controlling the source of contaminants, properly ventilating, changing filters regularly, controlling the humidity, performing regular housekeeping tasks with the proper equipment and supplies, and performing regular maintenance that protects our environment. An example of using proper cleaning equipment would be to have a HEPA filter on our vacuum cleaners. A HEPA filter is designed to remove 99.97% of airborne particles measuring 0.3 microns or greater in diameter. Examples of regular maintenance would include repairing leaking pipes, fixing or cleaning gutters and downspouts, cleaning or replacing filters in our HVAC unit and dehumidifiers. Lack of such regular maintenance can lead to moisture issues, which can then lead to mold contamination or the deterioration of our building components. Mixing high humidity with pollutants can lead to viral and bacterial diseases as well. 
Whether you are responsible for the environment of your home, rental property, or building . . . whether you are a facilities manager, property manager, landlord, construction or renovation professional . . . You will want to visit the "2019 Breathe Healthy Initiative" page of Baxter Group's website at www.baxtergroupinc.com for more information and sign up for the free E-book related to this initiative by emailing jm@baxtergroupinc.com or downloading directly from the website https://baxtergroupinc.com/healthy/

Community Foundation Has Over $90,000 Available in Scholarships

The Community Foundation of Washington County MD, Inc.  has 85 scholarships available totaling more than $90,000 for local students preparing for a post-secondary education. The Foundation encourages all public, private, homeschool and nontraditional students who live in Washington County, Maryland, to apply for these scholarships. 

Applicants can apply for more than one, but should note that each scholarship has different eligibility criteria, and he/she must review and meet all stated criteria for consideration. Requirements may include attendance at a certain high school in the county, plans to major in a specific course of study or participation in a designated extracurricular activity. There is no charge to apply for a scholarship listed on the Community Foundation's website. All scholarship applications are due between March and April 2019.

Visit the Community Foundation's website at www.cfwcmd.org and click on the Scholarships tab for specifics as well as links to the applications. Ineligible or incomplete applications will be disqualified.  

Washington County Health Department Offering Educational Sessions to Combat Opioid Epidemic

In 2018 in Washington County there were 346 documented overdoses related to opioid use, 63 of these were fatal. Opioid use affects places of employment all across our community by reducing productivity and increasing healthcare costs and absenteeism. 

The Behavioral Health Division of the  Washington County Health Department   can provide education, either in the workplace or at the Health Department, to help equip your employees to combat the opioid epidemic. These programs can be tailored to the needs of the place of employment. Topics that may be included in educational programs include:

*         Narcan training for overdose reversal
*         Information about the Good Samaritan Law
*         Community treatment and support services
*         Harm Reduction services

For more information about opioid education for the workplace, please contact  Julia Freed, Community Health Educator  by email ( Julia.freed@maryland.gov ) or phone (240-313-3248).  

Upcoming Chamber Events
Register for one of these upcoming Chamber functions!

State of the County
Tuesday, February 5th
6:30am Doors Open, 7am Breakfast, 7:45am Program
Fountain Head Country Club

Learning Lunch Hour with Randy Scott of Chick-fil-A Hagerstown
"The Secret: What Great Leaders Know & Do"
Thursday, February 7th, 11:30am - 1pm 

Eggs & Issues: "Work Keys - How to Become a Work Ready Community"
a Presentation from HCC President Dr. Jim Klauber
Wednesday, February 13th, 7:30-9:00am
Applause Caterers

Maximize Your Membership
Thursday, February 21, 9am - 10am
Learn about your Chamber membership, whether you're a new or seasoned member. Tips & tricks to maximize your opportunities through us!
Chamber Office Training Room

B.A.S.H. (Business and Social Hour)
Washington County Free Library
Thursday, February 21, 5pm - 7pm

20th Annual Washington County Business Awards
Wednesday, February 27th, 5pm - Hager Hall Conference & Event Center

Tickets: $65/each, $650/ table of 10


About Us
Washington County Chamber of Commerce members include more than 600 organizations, representing over 40,000 local jobs in a wide variety of industries:  Retail, Manufacturing, Healthcare, Skilled Trades, Service and Hospitality, Technology, Government, Nonprofit, and Education. 

We can't wait for our next opportunity to work with you, and for you! 


Washington County Chamber of Commerce
Celebrating 100 Years!
1 South Potomac Street
Hagerstown, Maryland 21740
Washington County Chamber of Commerce
(301) 739-2015


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