I moved to the Puget Sound area with a purpose, but little did I know that I also came here to fall in love. My daily drive to SODO was full of awe in all the Pacific Northwest had to offer: your mountains, the presence of multiple bodies of water, the people and the communities each with their own flavor. It was hard to explain to outsiders the charm of the neighborhoods and individual cities, each possessing a distinct personality with their own personal and collective value. For instance, the independent and funky nature of Fremont and the family-friendly and laid-back atmosphere of West Seattle.
The beauty you displayed was surreal and beyond what I could imagine. The splendor of the waterfront and Main Street are the heart of the community. The vibrant arts and welcoming people, the pulse. I could not imagine then, that this community would be where I now call home.
In all my travels since I moved to the Pacific Northwest, I am proudest of the warm reputation and community value, which makes Edmonds so loved and renowned. I became an individual chamber member, because now more than ever, we need to invest in the people and organizations committed to our local economy, community development and quality of life. My membership dollars, community service, volunteering and the relationships I developed go further because the Edmonds Chamber invests locally. Thank you for producing community events that serve both the citizens and businesses. What would Edmonds be like without the 4th of July celebrations, downtown classic car show, Halloween trick-or-treat event and tree lighting ceremony? These events not only bring people together in celebration, but have helped to shape the fabric of our community.
This year the Edmonds Chamber celebrates its 110th anniversary of serving the greater Edmonds community. I want it to be around for another 110 years, so it may continue to invest in the quality of life for the folks in and around the greater Edmonds community. I count myself lucky to be part of a diverse, inter-generational, cross-cultural and cross-sector group of folks that are members, volunteers, employees and community stakeholders of the Edmonds Chamber. You have all taught me so much and have made this place not only my home, but my community. My hope is that we continue to invest locally and leverage the relationships and interconnectedness which benefits both those who are new to the community and those with established roots here.
I ask you to join me by investing in the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce, an organization built upon relationships, volunteering and contributing to our local community. Did you know that the Edmonds Boys & Girls Club and many other non-profits and service clubs receive support from the chamber? Over the last five years the Edmonds Chamber has donated over $19,000 to the Edmonds-Woodway High School senior class.
My individual membership and support, will help ensure that community events can live on for the city I love. I ask you to invest in your community through individual or business memberships, because together we are demonstrating to our kids what we value. Please never stop fighting for our community values. Be intentional about where you invest your dollars, our community is worth it and we are stronger when we work together.
Ivette Bayo Urban moved from Miami, Florida in 2010. She is married to Greg Urban, current President/CEO of the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce. She met Greg when he was a chamber member and ambassador, introducing her to the City of Edmonds. Ivette is a PhD Candidate at the University of Washington’s iSchool, and does a whole bunch of cool stuff like recently presenting a TEDx talk in Edmonds. Additionally, she serves as a substitute for the Log Cabin Visitor Information Center, is part of the Friends of the Edmonds Library, and has volunteered at Edmonds Kiwanis Annual fundraiser for the past five years.