Bay County Chamber of Commerce
   
 

Bay County Chamber of Commerce

235 West 5th Street

Panama City, FL 32401

 

Phone: 850.785.5206

Fax: 850.763.6229

 

 

 

 

Alignment Bay County Announced
November 4, 2015

Business and community leaders gathered Wednesday morning to officially mark the establishment of Alignment Bay County, Inc., (ABC) a local non-profit with a solid goal of building a more sustainable community.

“We’re doing something in Bay County that brings all of us together to solve some of the more critical problems facing our youth,” said ABC Chairman Guy Tunnell of the Bay County Board of Commissioners. “Folks are rolling up their sleeves – from CEOs to educational leaders. We’re all in this together.”


ABC is not a service provider, nor does it exist to create new programs. Instead, it is a "backbone" organization designed to work directly in partnership with Bay District Schools and committed community volunteers and organizations. The model provides a structure and a process to educate community members about issues preventing student success. By harnessing existing resources in Bay County, creative student-centered solutions can be implemented.


Officially, the mission of ABC is to “align community organizations and resources so that their coordinated support of Bay County's youth has a positive impact on public school success, children's health, and the success of our community as a whole.”

Statistics released by Bay District Schools underline the importance of ABC, a collective impact organization:

  • More than 59% of all Bay District students are on free and reduced-price lunch programs.
  • Bay District Schools currently serve upwards of 1,400 homeless students.
  • 26% of BDS students are living in poverty.
  • Over 3,000 students miss more than 21 days of school annually.


ABC volunteers are not starting from scratch. A strong collective impact model exists in the form of Alignment Nashville (www.alignmentnashville.org). Nashville leaders have guided the Bay County development process, and over the past several months, the organizational pieces have been firmly laid locally. A 25-member Governing Board is seated, including: 

=         Guy Tunnell (Chairman), Bay County Board of Commissioners;

=         Ginger Littleton (Vice Chair), FSU Panama City Foundation, STEM Liaison;

=         Elizabeth Walters (Secretary), Burke Blue Hutchison Walters & Smith, P.A.;

=         John Juchniewicz (Treasurer), CFO, Berg Steel Pipe Corp.;

=         Jackie Rinker (Executive Board), Vice President/Market Manager, iHeart Radio;

=         Glen McDonald (Executive Board), Senior Vice President, ARA;

=         Elijah Smiley (Executive Board), Chief Judge, Fourteenth Judicial Circuit;

=         Stephanie White (Executive Board), CEO, Bay County Association of Realtors;

=         Bill Husfelt (Executive Board), Superintendent, Bay District Schools.


“Our team – from the Governing Board to the Operating Board and on down the line – is extremely strong,” Tunnell said. “We have chief financial officers, presidents, lawyers, doctors, educational and governmental leaders – even a retired physicist. What we need now is for every member of this community to consider how they might help us.” For more information, visit the website at AlignmentBayCounty.org or contact any Governing Board member. A full listing of leaders is published on the website.

 

If you have any additional questions, feel free to contact one of our staff members.

 

 

 

The mission of the Bay County Chamber of Commerce is to create superior value for all chamber members large and small, cultivate economic and personal development, promote and protect a competitive system of business, be a community leader while embracing Bay County’s opportunities and challenges.

 

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