The 82nd Annual Phillips County Chamber of Commerce Banquet was held Tuesday, April 10, 2018 at the PCCUA Fine Arts Center in Helena.

The program began with an opening prayer offered by Reverend Mike Wilkie, before Chamber Board member Doug Holloway welcomed the Keynote speaker, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, many other officials and dignitaries as well as the Chamber of Commerce membership in attendance.

Shawn Payne, County Extension Agent for the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture presented the 2017 Farm Family of the Year plaque to Timothy and Holly Jones.

Missy Ishmael, Chamber of Commerce Secretary presented the 2017 Community Service Organization award plaque to the Boys and Girls Club of Philips County.

Chamber of Commerce Board member John Dalencourt presented the 2017 Citizen of the Year award plaque to Missy Ishmael.

Representative Chris Richey introduced the Keynote Speaker Governor Asa Hutchinson. Gov. Hutchinson spoke about economic development in the Delta Region. He express his excitement at the potential of bringing business and jobs to Phillips County and the success being experienced by similar locations in Arkansas.

Gov. Hutchinson also toured Central High School during the day and spoke about getting computers in the hands of our students, to better prepare them for the future.

The Governor spoke about a recent occasion where he had been an event speaker. After he finished speaking, an elderly women approached him and ask if she could give him a hug. The governor thought she was going to give him a hug and thank him. After she hugged him, she said to him, “Now just who are you?”

The Reverend Mike Wilke, Chamber of Commerce Treasurer, presented the 2017 Business of the Year award plaque to Southbound Tavern, owned by Joel and Amber Tipton.

Doug Hollowell presented the 2017 Lifetime Citizenship award to Jason Rolett, who unexpectedly past away last year. Members of the Rolett family, his extended family from the Boys and Girls Club came forward to receive the award in his honor.

The 2018 Chamber of Commerce President, Scott Post, gave the closing remarks, thanking the Chamber membership for coming, thanking all those who made the event such a great success.