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April 22, 2022

The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce (MBACC) and Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) held its 83rd annual meeting on April 21, 2022, at the Marriott Myrtle Beach Resort at Grande Dunes. The event was an opportunity for the chamber’s board of directors, investors and invited guests to celebrate achievements from last year as well as honor those who worked to make their community stronger.

“We are honoring the success of our Myrtle Beach business community. 2021 was a year of recovery that showcased the resiliency, creativity and generosity of the area. Together, we are The Beach, and we should all be proud for the many accomplishments of the last year,” said MBACC Board of Directors 2022 Chairwoman Alex Husner during the meeting.

Duane Parrish, director of South Carolina Parks, Recreation and Tourism, addressed the audience with affirmations regarding the health of tourism within the state. Karen Riordan, MBACC and CVB President and CEO, followed with an overview of the chamber and CVB’s accomplishments and endeavors over the past year and what’s ahead for the organization.

“Myrtle Beach was the No. 1 market for hotel revenue recovery in the country last year. We intend to continue this recovery and maintain market share while expanding market-wide analytics capabilities and enhancing our visitor services and engagement,” Riordan said.

The program included the CVB’s 2021 Annual Report, which showcases key performance indicators for the region’s tourism sector, including data showing the Myrtle Beach area set records in 2021 for lodging recovery, sales and tourism tax revenue and airport usage. In fact, visitation to the area was up 51 percent in 2021 from 2020, according to location data provided by Near.com.

The highlight of the evening was the awards ceremony where the following professionals and businesses were honored:

  • Dr. Tracy S. Bailey, Leadership Grand Strand’s Ann DeBock Leadership Award
  • Hope Wofford, Grand Strand Young Professional’s Ambassador of the Year
  • Jason Toy, Grand Strand Young Professional’s Young Professional of the Year
  • Brandon Skipper, Chamber Ambassador of the Year
  • Sam Smith, Chamber Volunteer of the Year sponsored by Coastal Luxe LLC
  • Michael King, Entrepreneur of the Year sponsored by Truist
  • Dr. Atiya Stokes-Brown, Champion of Diversity sponsored by TD Bank
  • Jackie Alston, Hospitality Employee of the Year sponsored by Best Western Ocean Sands Resort
  • EcoShield Asphalt Products, Business Innovation Award
  • Tidelands Health, Community Service Award sponsored by Merrill Lynch
  • SOS Care, Nonprofit of the Year sponsored by WPDE
  • Real Hot Yoga, Small Business of the Year sponsored by A&I Fire and Water Restoration
  • Larry Bragg, Ashby Ward Pioneer of the Year sponsored by Carolina Cool

In addition, 18 local high school seniors from 14 area schools were recognized for their leadership and accomplishments through the chamber’s Educational Scholarship Foundation and contributions from local business, including Ron Jon Surf Shop. A total of $28,000 in scholarships was awarded to the following recipients:

  • Eliza Sansbury, Academy for Arts, Science and Technology
  • Benjamin Bullard, Academy for Technology and Academics
  • Garrison Gasque, Aynor High School
  • Dana Charles Ann MacDonald, Carolina Forest High School
  • Caroline Nobles, Conway High School
  • Imunique Herriott, Early College High School
  • Dalton Stroud, Green Sea Floyds High School
  • Rachel Jordan and Camden Smith, HCS Scholars Academy
  • Noah Vescovi, Loris High School
  • Beta-Jonica Vieux, Ehud Melnik and Bridget Lever, Myrtle Beach High School
  • Devi Gohil and Cara Hilburn, North Myrtle Beach High School
  • Aidan Walker, Socastee High School
  • Cameron Mack, St. James High School
  • Jonathan Hughes, Waccamaw High School

The annual meeting was made possible through the following sponsors: BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, Santee Cooper, Tidelands Health, Quality Business Solutions, A&I Fire and Water Restoration, Best Western Ocean Sands, Carolina Cool, HTC, TD Bank, Truist, WPDE ABC 15, Merrill, Brookgreen Gardens, Carolina Trust Federal Credit Union, KingOne Properties International, Myrtle Beach Regional Economic Development Corporation, SkyWheel Myrtle Beach, The Jackson Companies, Myrtle Beach Pelicans, Waccamaw Publishers, Habitat for Humanity of Horry County, United Contractors Roofing, Benjamin’s Bakery, Coastal Luxe Interiors, Coastal Engravers, and Coharie Ventures.

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