The first award was the Wall of Honor award given to Rev. Doug Hinchcliff. Hinchcliff has served on the Live Oak County Community Development board, the GW Chamber of Commerce board. He is also a member of the Lions Club and has helped with Storyfest, Relay for Life and other events. In addition has served the community as a United Methodist Church pastor.
“There have been few community or civic events at which you would not find Doug present,” said Crystal Lyne, vice president of the chamber. “He truly practices what he preaches, and believes that church is part of the community, and the community is part of the church.”
Hinchcliff has recently left George West to be a senior pastor at a church in Rockport but was at Tuesday’s banquet to accept his award and visit with friends.
The second award handed out was for chamber member of the year. This year’s recipient was Bottom Line Services which has been in service more than 10 years. The company was formed by Greg Blevins and Paige Bartlett in a home. As the business grew so did the partnerships. Terry and Lisa Jackson were added as partners. The company has grown to include more than 400 employees and now “focuses on plant and pipeline construction.”
Lyne said the company had recently made another big change as well.
“Big news was released just last week that Bottom Line Services has formed a multimillion dollar partnership with Howard Energy partners and Texas Pipeline, LLC.”
As Bottom Line grew as a business so did their dedication to their community. Over the years the company has sponsored Storyfest, Live Oak County Fair, Little League and more.
Lisa Jackson took time to thank her parents for all their support over the years when she accepted the award, along with her husband and business partner.
After the awards concluded, those present heard guest speakers Gilbert Gonzalez of the UTSA Institute for Economic Development, and Javier Oyakawa of the Center for Community and Business Research talk briefly about the Eagle Ford shale economic impact and rural growth.
Gonzales focused on the importance of rural development for youth. He said jobs need to be created to keep the young people from leaving after school, and this in turn continues the town on a growing process.
“If they (youths) leave, so does your future,” Gonzales said.
Oyakawa focused on the Eagle Ford shale. He explained that despite a recent New York Times article that said the gas boom would not last, he believes it will. He said that the Eagle Ford will last longer because it has diversified resources unlike some other shales. The Eagle Ford contains oil, natural gas and gas liquids and this will ensure its survival.
He went on to say that a conservative estimate is 68,000 jobs by 2020.
County Judge Jim Huff gave the closing remarks for the evening.