Your Success is Our Business by Laura Rowles View All Posts

photo of Laura Rowles at GGCC

About Your Success is Our Business by Laura Rowles

Laura Rowles is the Director of Events & Marketing for the Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber of Commerce (GGCC) serving almost 400 members by hosting over 30 networking events each year, as well as providing educational seminars and special events. The Chamber hosts numerous events each year including: breakfasts, lunches, after-five’s, ribbon cuttings... Read more

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BLOG: Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber 2021 Board of Directors Inducted

It’s been 71 years since the Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber of Commerce (GGCC) came into being, and it’s safe to say that this year has been the most unusual of years on record. This year has not gone the way any of us envisioned it would. Keeping with unusual, the GGCC held their annual gala digitally the evening of December 3rd.

The evening was a celebration of the partnerships the Chamber has to help grow and sustain a healthy local economy. The GGCC continues to support & serve start-ups, and small to large sized businesses, by being a premier platform for visibility and growth. The Chamber’s main focus over the past 8 months has been to keep its Members informed, to help keep businesses intact, and to help our local economy survive this health crisis.

“As with the rest of 2020, our annual celebration dinner has changed,” said Marilyn Balcombe, GGCC President / CEO. Even though we can’t meet in person, we can still celebrate our accomplishments for the year and finally say good riddance to 2020!”

Business wasn’t the only thing the Chamber was celebrating, the annual ‘you made a difference’ was presented to Bryan Beamer of iPlan for his contributions to the Chamber’s board; the 14th annual small business of the year was awarded to Infinite Bridge, the 8th annual young professional of the year was awarded to Eric Ashmont of Edward Jones; ten Montgomery College students were awarded scholarships totaling over $13.5k; and the Chamber’s board was installed.

“Looking ahead to 2021, we will continue to have even greater challenges as we navigate the post-COVID world,” said Marilyn Balcombe, GGCC President / CEO. We have a strong Board of Directors going in to 2021 and with their leadership, the Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber stands ready to do our part to rebuild our local economy.”

A twist of the evening, the Chamber’s board induction was a part of their formal program. As a board member, they are assuming considerable responsibility for the smooth functioning of the chamber board of directors and the efficient and effective operation of the organization. The Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber is a federation of business and professional people working together to build a healthy economy and to improve the quality of life in our community.

The Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber 2021 Board of Directors were inducted the evening of December 3, 2020. In customary fashion, the outgoing chair receives a gavel. Incoming chair Anita Anderson, Leadership Maryland, virtually presented it to the now past chair Bruce Kanner, Cartridge on Wheels, and thanked him for his dedication and service.
(Photo Credit: Laura Rowles, Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber)

Balcombe welcomed the new board and introduced the 2021 officers Colette Releford, a past Chair and current Chair Emeritus, conducted a formal installation. She recognized the outgoing Board Chair, Bruce Kanner, and welcomed David McCormick-Goodhart, the incoming Chair-Elect.

Releford then installed Anita Anderson, executive director at Leadership Maryland, as the 2021 Board Chair. Anderson was bestowed the honor in recognition of her abilities, qualities, and character that distinguish her commitment to excellence for the organization. Anderson has been a board member for seven years serving in capacity as the vice chair of the events committee and on the Chamber’s executive committee.

The GGCC is pleased to announce its 2021 Board of Directors. They are the leaders of the business community.

The 2021 GGCC Board of Directors:

Chair: Anita Anderson, Leadership Maryland

Chair Elect: David McCormick-Goodhart, Savant Capital Management

Treasurer: Adam Cox, Hughes Network Systems, LLC

Vice Chairs:

Economic Development & Legislative Affairs: Henry Bernstein, Scheer Partners, Inc.

Member Programs: Heather Madison, Peterson Companies

Young Professionals: Brett Rough, Aerotek

Member Services: Aj Nwoga, M & T Bank 

Immediate Past Board Chair:

Bruce Kanner, Cartridge on Wheels


  • Bryan Beamer, iPlan
  • Barbara Crews
  • Brett Friedman, DeLeon & Stang, CPAs & Advisors
  • Brittany Hilton, Hughes Network Systems, LLC
  • Martin Hollander, Crown Trophy
  • PJ Horan, Highlander Financial Group
  • Margaret Latimer, Montgomery College
  • Tom Lonergan, City of Gaithersburg
  • Matt Maynard, Therrien Waddell, Inc.
  • Ray McKenzie, The Law Office of Raymond T. McKenzie, Esq.
  • Michel Potter, Asbury Methodist Village
  • Doug Ryder, Holy Cross Germantown Hospital
  • Cindy Sabana, Silver Diner RIO
  • Randy Scritchfield, Randy Scritchfield and Associates
  • Alan Speck, Mid-Atlantic Federal Credit Union
  • Gary Unterberg, Rodgers Consulting, Inc.
  • Laura Volovski, Shady Grove Adventist Hospital / Adventist Healthcare
  • John Zuknick, Universities at Shady Grove


Chair Emeritus:

  • Stuart Barr, Lerch, Early & Brewer, Chartered
  • John Compton, BlackRock Center for the Arts
  • Jim Muir, Hughes Network Systems, LLC
  • Colette Releford, Redfin Real Estate
  • Will Schlossenberg

The GGCC is active in providing business-to-business networking opportunities throughout the year: a collective voice in local, regional, and state legislative affairs, professional development opportunities and other services that enhance the business environment.

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Laura Rowles

About Laura Rowles

Laura authors the blog Your Success is Our Business on MyMCMedia. Laura is the Director of Events & Marketing for the Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber of Commerce - a member-based organization of businesses that have joined together for the purpose of promoting the civic, commercial and industrial progress in our communities. The area's economic well-being is a result of the caliber of work that is done by the Chamber. The Chamber has a major impact on business, income and future growth of the area. My position at the Chamber - Director of Events & Marketing - affords me the opportunity to plan quality events for our Members and market the Chamber is a variety of avenues. At the GGCC, we typically have around 30 events each year including: breakfasts, lunches, after-five's, ribbon cuttings and special events. The consensus is we have high quality events with good energy. In 2012, we had over 2,040 people visit our events. Most our events are free to Members so securing sponsorships for all events. Additionally, I am responsible for planning networking, overseeing the budget and marketing of all events in order to make them successful. Lastly, I coordinate all marketing and communication efforts of the GGCC including weekly email blasts, its quarterly newsletter, all social media platforms, media relations and community outreach.


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