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GRCC Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership
Guidry News Forum
Galveston Regioanl Chamber of Commerce working to help members and entire region
by GRCC President Gina Spagnola
Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Good morning, friends! 

Thank goodness for blue skies and sunlight….! 😊

The chamber staff has been working 24/7 during the storm to help our businesses and non-profits with their most urgent needs.

We raised over $25,000 for The Salvation Army in 24 hours for their shelter services. (Thanks so much to Betty Massey and her help getting information to our local Foundations!”  And, thank God for our local foundations that have met all our needs and will continue to meet needs;  every step of the way.

We helped stock the “Church of the Living God’s” shelter, last night.  All their needs, for now, have been met.

We’ve been in contact with Catholic Charities, Seafarers and Untied Way and have a unified plan for services and how each of us will play a roll.

We have secured “school supplies” for Odyssey Academy families who have lost everything…this was funded in 2 minutes!!!  😊  

We have been on conference calls with the US Chamber Disaster Team (on which I serve) Texas Association of Business, Texas Chamber Executives (effected by Harvey), and the Associations of Chamber of Commerce’s disaster team (on which I serve.)

We will continue to work closely with Jeff and Michelle at the GEDP and all information gathered, so we can better serve our community.

Rest assured the all of these organizations stand ready to help our regional businesses!!

We are assessing hotel room occupancies/rentals/shelter availability to better provide information for the thousands that are reaching out to our chamber.

We are working with neighboring chambers and their cities to try to get them ready to begin serving their respective communities.

We have been collecting data from our businesses, non-profits, schools and citizens regarding their “most urgent needs” (all week) as well as, collecting resources that can help meet the needs.

We will begin forwarding our “regional” needs to the TAB and they will then reach out to their “large corporate/national sponsors/members” for help!!

We will attend a “recovery meeting” tomorrow meeting at 10:00a.m. at the Sea Star Base Galveston to share information and resources.  Congressman Weber, Senator Taylor, Representative Faircloth will also be in attendance.

We are working with the Rockport/Fulton Chamber on a Recovery Expo for them.  I hope to spend some time there, next week… 

We are continuing to pull together resources from our members, and have been working very closely with the GCDN, every step of the way.  Thanks so much, Leonard and your incredible team!! 

I think the City has done a remarkable job, and I have had some opportunities to spend a little time with them throughout this disaster!  I’m so very proud of them, and I know their work, like ours, is far from over. 

All of our “chamber meetings” this week have been canceled, but we are still moving forward with our Legislative Luncheon which I believe is even more important.  We have also asked the City to speak at the event, as well!! 

Thank you so much to our heroic friends who have been risking their lives to safe others throughout our region.  Ben Peterek is one of them.  I’m not sure just how many people he rescued but the numbers are staggering…. We LOVE you Ben!  I know there are many others! 

I know everyone has helped in their own way, and that’s what makes our community so wonderful!  “My Galveston” is people helping people…  

Please let us know if you need anything?   

Finally, please pray for Bix and Adrianne Rathburn.  As most of you know, they have lost almost everything in their home…

In addition,  please pray Rhonda Harris who is still trying to determine her losses.  She’s not able to get back in her home.  

I’ll end with two of my favorite quotes: (Laura Blacksher’s favorites, too!) 

“You Never know how Strong you are…Until being Strong is the ONLY choice you have…” -Unknown 

“They will be able to say that she stood in the storm…and when the wind did not blow her way-and it surely has not-she adjusted her sails.”…Elizabeth Edwards 


Gina Spagnola
GRCC President

Remembering Jim Guidry

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