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Annual chamber dinner to be held this year

If you go

¯ What: Marietta Area Chamber of Commerce annual dinner.

¯ When: Monday, Aug. 9.

¯ Time: Social hour begins at 5 p.m. Dinner seating begins at 6:15 p.m. Meal served at 6:30 p.m. Program begins at 7 p.m.

¯ Where: Dyson-Baudo Recreation Center at Marietta College.

¯ Cost: $50 per member and $60 per non-member. Tickets include admission, networking opportunities during social hour, a three-course meal, and community awards presentation.

¯ Reservations: Required by calling 740-373-5176, emailing info@mariettachamber.com or via the chamber website, mariettachamber.com.

Source: Marietta Area Chamber of Commerce.

The 106th annual dinner of the Marietta Area Chamber of Commerce will continue this year, only a few months later than usual.

Last year’s event, which brought together about 1,000 attendees from businesses around the county, was held shortly before the COVID lockdown in March.

Kelsey Eaton, MACC president/CEO, said the event is traditionally held in March, but will be held Aug. 9 this year.

“We wanted to wait until we could gather in person,” she said, noting the networking part of the dinner is important.

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This year’s speaker will be Wally Kandel, senior vice-president and North America Director of Solvay Group Engineering and Construction.

According to the chamber, Kandel has been a member of the local business community for more than 30 years. A 1987 graduate of Marietta College’s Petroleum Engineering program, he has held several field and management positions working for Chevron, Chevron Phillips and Solvay.

These assignments have included working on four different continents.

For the last 14 years, Kandel has been the senior vice-president and Marietta site manager of Solvay Specialty Polymers and was just recently named the North American director of Solvay Group Engineering and Construction.

He is also one of the founding directors of Shale Crescent USA.

Eaton noted Kandel was awarded the Gabe Zide Citizen of the Year Award by the chamber at the 2019 annual dinner for his dedication to the Marietta area’s economic growth, his service to the community as a member of Rotary, and his active service in the church.

He was also previously named the Marietta Area Chamber of Commerce 2012 Business Leader of the Year.

Eaton said the chamber wanted to focus on the local community this year, as it’s been a difficult year for the business community.

“We wanted to pick someone from our area to speak to challenges in our community and he’s a prominent businessman,” she said.

She said the chamber felt Kandel’s speech “would be more relevant to what we’re facing in this area.”

“He would be a great choice to talk about the things we do in this area … some challenges and some things to look to moving forward,” Eaton said.

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The dinner will be held Monday, Aug. 9, at the Dyson-Baudo Recreation Center at Marietta College.

Officials said tickets are $50 per chamber member and $60 per non-member. Tickets include admission, networking opportunities during social hour, a three-course meal, and community awards presentation.

Reservations are required and may be obtained by calling 740-373-5176 or emailing info@mariettachamber.com. Reservations may also be made via the chamber’s website www.mariettachamber.com.

Social hour will begin at 5 p.m., with dinner seating to begin at 6:15 p.m. with a meal prepared by Parkhurst Catering served at 6:30 p.m., officials said.

The program will begin at 7 p.m., followed by the Washington County Council of Cooperative Agricultural Award, the Zonta Elizabeth L. Hadler Woman of the Year Award, the Gabe Zide Citizen of the Year Award, and the Marietta Area Chamber of Commerce Business Leader of the Year Award

Eaton said the award winners will be announced at the dinner, but they have already been chosen.

The Washington County Council of Cooperative Agriculture Award is chosen by their own committee, as is the Zonta Elizabeth L. Hadler Woman of the Year Award, she said.

The Gabe Zide award is chosen by a group of civic organizations in the Marietta area, while the biggest award, the business leader of the year, is chosen by previous winners, members of the chamber and representatives from the chamber board, Eaton said.

Michele Newbanks can be reached at

mnewbanks@mariettatimes.com.

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