Chamber welcomes new president at annual dinner

Hazarian says he, businesses are looking ahead to recovery
By: Jenifer Gee Journal News Editor
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The first address by the new president of the Auburn Chamber of Commerce was met with mixed emotions. Holding up signs saying both “It’s torture” and “We believe,” about 70 dinner guests cheered as Auburn Journal Publisher and President Tony Hazarian took the stage to officially be installed as the chamber’s 2011 president. The signs were a nod to Hazarian’s lifelong love of the San Francisco Giants, whose game playing was dubbed “torture” baseball by an announcer until 2010 when the team won its first World Series since moving to the Bay Area 50 years ago. Saturday night’s installation and awards dinner held in Auburn carried the theme “All Things Tony” as Hazarian was sworn in as the 106th president of the chamber. “I’m very much looking forward to this year and to join in the recovery of the economy that we’re all hearing about,” Hazarian said. Deric Rothe, editor and general manager of the Auburn Journal, officially installed Hazarian as well as the chamber’s 2011 officers and its 13-person board of directors. Hazarian said he’s ready to work with the chamber’s board, staff and volunteers in the coming year. “I know business is hard but we are all very positive,” Hazarian said. “There are challenges but we’re always looking ahead.” Hazarian said the chamber will focus on service to members. He added that the governmental affairs team plans to take on topics such as management of the American River Canyon and water issues in the area. He said the chamber will continue to host the Auburn Family Fourth of July celebration as well as the Festival of Lights. The evening event also included the presentation of awards to top members and volunteers. Dennis Lloyd, a retired Rock Creek School teacher, was honored as the Volunteer of the Year. Becki McGinnis of Autovantage Service Center was given the Rising Star award, Old Town Pizza’s Reese Browning was honored as the Good Will Ambassador of the Year and Wayne Manning of Manning Consulting was bestowed the Lifetime Achievement award. “This is a great honor,” Manning said. “I accept it with mixed emotions of happiness and joy.” Outgoing chamber president Bill Radakovitz also surprised member Steve Galyardt with the President’s Award for 2010. Galyardt, who is vice president and manager of Community 1st Bank in Auburn, was recognized for his “outstanding service and dedication” to the Auburn chamber and community for his work chairing the annual Festival of Lights parade and his involvement in other activities. Radakovitz said his tenure as chamber president “will go down as a year of transition” as many members dealt with a “bumpy” economy. Radakovitz thanked members and staff. He also welcomed back chamber CEO Bruce Cosgrove, who was expected to resume his post Tuesday after a prolonged absence due to medical reasons. Reach Jenifer Gee at -------------------------- Meet the 2011 Auburn Chamber Of Commerce President Name: Tony Hazarian Age: 49 Profession: Publisher and President of the Auburn Journal and Colfax Record Hobbies: Running, golf, wine, music and sports Experience: 26 years in news, advertising, marketing, circulation and management at daily and weekly newspapers in California, Oregon and Washington 2011 goal for the chamber: Grow membership and member involvement through communication, education and benefits