Chamber founder retires after 25 years of service
In its 25th year, the Basehor Chamber of Commerce has been making some changes, welcoming four new faces to the board and saying farewell to its founder.
At its Dec. 10 dinner and silent auction, the chamber recognized Susan Guy for her 25 years of service with the organization and appointed Carla Kaiser, Deb Taylor, Valarie Grant and Jeff Sutton to the board.
Involved from the beginning and serving as president for more than a decade, Guy said she felt it was time to pass the torch.
“I started the chamber (in 1985) because I saw there was a need,” Guy said. “And I stayed to make sure it was successful. It’s in good hands now. There are a lot of good representatives on the board and a lot of development in the area.”
One such representative is Taylor, certified public accountant for Kramer and Associates in Leavenworth. Taylor has been going to chamber meetings on behalf of her company for more than a year and said she saw numerous benefits to serving on the chamber board.
“I wanted to build relationships in Basehor and saw a great opportunity for networking,” Taylor said of why she sought a board position.
A Basehor resident herself, Taylor said being on the chamber board would allow her to become more involved with the city that had enthusiastically accepted her and her family.
“Everyone (in Basehor) is so friendly and open,” Taylor said. “This will help me have a deeper connection with the community.”
Kaiser, Basehor Community Library director, previously served as secretary of the chamber, and now that the new library is well established, she said she had the time to devote to being a board member once again.
“I enjoyed being secretary,” Kaiser said. “My workload has died down a little, and I have more time now to do this.”
A recent goal the library has developed is becoming a central source of information for the community, and Kaiser’s serving on the board could fuel such an achievement, she said.
“It really fell in line with the library’s current planning,” Kaiser said. “Basehor is in a position to get things rolling, and I think this is going to be a great thing.”
Of the other two new members, Grant is the owner of Creative Promotions, and Sutton is part owner of the law firm Gibbens, Sutton and Sonntag.
Looking back on her time with the chamber, Guy said a few highlights in her tenure were successfully expanding U.S. Highway 24-40, the creation of the Southern Leavenworth County Leadership Development program and bringing welcome signs to Basehor’s city limits.
“It was a very proud moment when we drove down 24-40 for the first time after it had been widened,” Guy said.
Guy says she will miss being a full-time member of the board, but as an honorary lifetime member, she plans to make an appearance at a few future meetings.
“I’ll still be involved, and I’m sure (the chamber) will still call me for information,” Guy said. “I’ll miss it, but after 25 years, it’s kind of nice to retire from it, too.”