I am writing this article as we complete the first week of 2014. I am encouraged about the new year here in the Lake Gaston region and with the Chamber of Commerce and am ready to get down to the business of supporting the businesses and communities around the region. I am eager to work with our dynamic new board of directors in charting our course for this year and look toward the Chamber’s 50th Anniversary in five years.
Our returning board members are as follows: Bill Owens, ACE Hardware of Lake Gaston; Brady Martin, Halifax Electric Membership Corporation; Marcia Kerr, Re/Max on the Lake; Mary Lou Kellogg, Community Memorial Healthcenter; Ellie Smith, BB&T-Lake Gaston branch; Scott Watson, Lakeside Painting; Kyle Thompson, Martin Exterminating; Gene St. Clair, Roanoke Porta-Johns; Mark Mathews, Lake Gaston Gazette-Observer.
I’m pleased to introduce our new board members: Nina Angle, Anglewood Kitchens and Design; Susan Bersch, Susan C. Bersch CPA, PLLC; Nancy Bulluck, Citizens Community Bank (CCB)-Gasburg branch; and Mike Pucci, Pucci Consulting.
Nina Angle had this to say about joining the Lake Gaston Regional Chamber of Commerce board of Directors: “I am honored to have been elected to serve as a board member for the Lake Gaston Regional Chamber of Commerce. Originally from North Carolina, my husband Matthew’s and my decision to move back in 2008 was family-motivated. After months of research and visiting the area, it was an easy decision to make Lake Gaston our new home. Matthew and I formed Anglewood Kitchens and Design in June of 2010, and we moved our showroom to the area in summer of 2011. I look forward to being a part of the Chamber board in helping chart the course for a common vision for economic and community progress, enhancing community assets and work to continue long traditions in the Lake Gaston Region.”
Susan Bersch has over 30 years of experience in the fields of accounting, auditing, financial reporting and taxation. She spent most of her career in public accounting and was both an audit and a tax partner with a national firm, McGladrey & Pullen, for 14 years. Prior to that she was a controller for a group of auto dealers. Her focus has been on tax planning and business advisory services as well as federal and multi-state tax compliance services since 2007 for small to mid-size businesses, individuals, estates and trusts. In 2012 she started her own practice, Susan C. Bersch CPA, PLLC, in Littleton, NC. Susan has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the College of Charleston and a master’s degree in Taxation from DePaul University. She is a licensed CPA in North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC, and Florida.
Nancy Bulluck is the Vice President and Branch Manager of Citizen’s Community Bank’s (CCB) office in Gasburg, Virginia. She has been employed with CCB since 2000 serving in various roles and was named Branch Manager in 2009. She is a 2005 graduate of the Virginia Banker’s Association (VBA) Consumer Lending School and a 2013 graduate of the VBA Commercial Lending School. She earned her branch manager certification from the VBA in 2010. Outside of work, Nancy is married to Mr. Ken Bulluck of Bulluck Communications, Inc. and Catering 2 U. She has two sons and five stepsons that she calls her own, as well as eight beautiful grandchildren – five boys and three girls. Nancy notes, “I can truly say that I love my job and everyone that I work with at CCB. I look forward to serving on the Lake Gaston Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, and hope to see all of you soon!”
Mike Pucci and his wife Barb have been property owners at lake Gaston for 20 years and have been full-time residents here since 2010 when Mike retired after a 28-year career in Sales and Marketing and Federal Government Affairs at Glaxosmithkline in Raleigh. Mike started his health care consulting business from his home on the lake in 2010 with clients including Sanofi Pharmaceuticals, Teva Pharmaceuticals, CMR Institute, Alliance for Patient Access, IMS, GSK and, Upsher Smith Laboratories. Currently, Mike is supporting the mission of PhytoChem Pharmaceuticals as CEO, planning to bring to market novel products and medical foods derived from the Olive Fruit responsible for the health benefits observed in the Mediterranean Diet, including lower Breast and Colo-rectal cancer rates, and lower incidence of cardiovascular disease and atherosclerosis. Mike’s volunteer work includes board membership and chairmanship of the We Build People campaign for the AE Finley YMCA in Raleigh, founder of the Together Rx Access Program, and, most recently, chairman of the North Carolina Coalition Against Uranium mining and milling, which supported the stunning defeat of the uranium mining campaign that threatened the Roanoke River and the water supply for NE North Carolina and the future water supply for the growing Triangle region. Mike was elected Vice President of the Roanoke River Basin Association in 2013.
I am also excited to announce the next phase of our Shop Lake Gaston First campaign – the Shop Lake Gaston First Business Blitz – beginning next weekend January 17-18! Each week throughout 2014, in partnership with the Lake Gaston Gazette-Observer, we are going to announce a Lake Gaston regional business that we would like as many people to support as possible on a given day. That means that for a particular day (typically a Saturday) we want as many Lake Gaston regional residents and visitors as possible to show their support for businesses around Lake Gaston by visiting and shopping with that business that day!
Our first Shop Lake Gaston First Business Blitz will take place at Lakeland Theatre Company during opening weekend of their new show 9 to 5, presented by students of the Tisch School of the Arts in New York. If you are a Lakeland regular or if you have never seen a show there but have always meant to go, call them for tickets to a show on the night of January 17 and 18 at 8 p.m. or January 19 at 2:30 p.m. (or the following weekend January 24 and 25 at 8 p.m.) and show your love for one of our wonderful community theatres and the many, many volunteers who entertain us in the Lake Gaston region!
Keep watching the newspaper, the calendar on the Chamber’s website, our email specials and our Facebook page, as we announce more Shop Lake Gaston First Business Blitzes! Let’s keep our dollars local and keep our businesses in business!