By TANYA DORAN
Executive Director, Greater Riverview Chamber of Commerce
My husband Bill and I recently returned from a trip to Ireland, where we celebrated our 26th wedding anniversary. We spent 12 days touring all parts of the Emerald Isle, each area with its unique characteristics. This country was more beautiful than we had ever imagined. Many of the vistas we saw were breathtaking.
One of our favorite stops was at a sixth-generation family farm. The stories this family shared were inspirational and allowed us to imagine the trials each generation lived through along with the challenges the current generation faces. We were astonished with the commitment, dedication and sacrifices of its members.
These same characteristics are present in many of our local businesses, whose owners personally invest in their community. Unless you have personally owned and operated a business, you may not fully understand the many demands required. Business owners have a special kind of passion. These folks often have a strong community pride and immediately jump into action, especially when their community is in need.
As our area continues to recover from the impact of Hurricane Irma, it’s heartwarming to learn about how neighbors helped neighbors. Folks opened their businesses and/or homes to support others, made generous donations and volunteered their valuable time to help others in need. There were countless individuals who helped family, friends, employees, co-workers, neighbors and strangers.
Special thanks to them and the numerous employees of Hillsborough County, the state and Tampa Electric Company who worked long hours for many days. Their coordination and support was greatly appreciated.
Special thanks go to Eros and Julie Dahl, owners of Riverview Mortgage, who took on the challenge to help several families dealing with flooding and local CPA Theresa Turner, owner of Tax Happens; Lee and Lisa Sisson, owners of Knights Air Conditioning; and the Blanchard family, owners of the Summerfield Crossings Golf Club (to name only a few) who jumped into action to assist a community filled with seniors struggling with no electric and water. The list of folks who helped others is long, and it’s impossible to mention everyone.
Our community is special because of many caring folks like these, so remember their businesses when you’re in need of their products or services. Shop local. These companies are part of our community and make a difference.
Our area is not perfect but our community’s spirit is amazing; and it’s the place we call home. And after that long trip to Ireland, it’s so good to be home.
Tanya Doran is the executive director of the Greater Riverview Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached at Director@RiverviewChamber.com or 813-234-5944.