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Caesars wins Chamber President’s Award for Community Service

Caesars wins Chamber President’s Award for Community Service
Caesars wins Chamber President’s Award for Community Service
Caesars Indiana general manager Ed Garruto accepts the President's Award for Community Service on behalf of Caesars' 2,100 team members. The award was presented by outgoing Chamber president Pam Bennett Martin, at left. (Photo by Jonathan O'Bannon)

Caesars Indiana was awarded the President’s Award for Community Service at the 73rd annual meeting Thursday night of the Chamber of Commerce of Harrison County.
Outgoing president Pam Bennett Martin presented the trophy, a hand-sculpted glass flame by Zimmerman Art Glass in Corydon, to Caesars Indiana’s general manager Ed Garruto, who accepted on behalf of the 2,100 people who work at the gaming complex.
‘Harrison County has been a great place to do business, and we look forward to many more successful years,’ Garruto said. ‘Thank you very much; we will continue to have a great partnership.’
Judy Hess, communications director, and Jeff Krohn, director of golf operations, joined Garruto in accepting the trophy.
Martin selected Caesars for its willingness to always help the community fulfill its needs. She said those works include:
‘ Caesars Indiana has led the United Way campaign each year since arriving in 1997 and this year, Garruto chaired the campaign;
‘ A Caesars’ representative serves as a director on the Chamber’s board and on Leadership Harrison County;
‘ Caesars has always led the walk for the American Heart Association and has participated in the Relay for Life in Harrison County;
‘ Caesars sponsors the Women in Philanthropy brunch, and has been a corporate sponsor of Leadership Harrison County, Showcase Harrison County, and Harrison County Community Services food pantry and Christmas food baskets;
‘ Caesars supports the Harrison County Hospital Foundation and Rotary Club, and has been the number one contributor to the Fourth of July fireworks celebration each year in Corydon; and
‘ Caesars has contributed more than $76.1 million to the Harrison County Community Foundation, including the initial $5 million when the company was approved by the Indiana Gaming Commission to operate here.
‘Harrison County gambled smartly when they passed the referendum in 1993,’ Martin said. ‘With this award, we thank Caesars Indiana for their continued community partnership.’
The Ambassador’s Award was presented to Joseph Gross, coordinator of community relations and fund development for Blue River Services Inc., by Donn Blank, chairman of the Chamber’s Membership Committee.
Incoming president Samuel E. Eckart also addressed the crowd of about 400 business leaders and public officials at the dinner.
A major goal during the next year will be to help bring high-speed Internet to Harrison County, to make it available to 90 percent of the businesses and people here, Eckart said.
He encouraged all, as businesses, not to blame others for problems, to shoulder responsibilities, and to be bold and courageous. In the long term, he said, ‘You will regret the things you don’t do more than the things you did.’
Chamber executive director Barbara K. Middleton brought the crowd up-to-date on the past year’s accomplishments. The keynote speaker was Kip Lilly of Lilly Foresight Dynamics, who gave an appraisal of the Chamber and the voice it gives to Harrison County’s businesses and Chambers in general. He also kept the audience on its feet stretching, waving, reaching out, and pointing to each other during much of his lively, not-too-lengthy presentation. His conclusion, after much to-do, was that Harrison County’s Chamber of Commerce ‘does a lot of good stuff.’