The Marion Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce the finalists for the 2019 Distinguished Member Award. Jared Garrison, along with Brian McHugh and Herby Voss, have been nominated for this year's award. Our finalists have been nominated by fellow chamber members and selected by the Awards Committee.
Jared Garrison, a native of Marion, Illinois, graduated cum laude from Oklahoma City University and has been the Executive Director of The Pavilion in Marion since right before the city purchased the facility in 2011. When Jared took over as Executive Director of The Pavilion, the Pavilion was in dire straits – almost no events and a very bad reputation in the area. Jared has worked diligently with the city, the chamber and our community to increase the Pavilion’s events to over 300 events per year for the last five years and is on track to break that record this year. In addition, he was appointed by Mayor Rinella to serve on the City of Marion’s Colt World Series Committee for its inaugural summer.
Jared loves our community and prides himself on selflessly serving us. He is on the Board of Directors for the Marion Chamber of Commerce and is on the Board of Directors for VisitSI. For the chamber, Jared serves as one of the Co-Chairs of the Marketing Committee and is also one of the Co-Chairs of the Sister City Committee. In addition to this, he is main point of contact for all Sister City (Kanie, Japan) relations. Jared also serves as one of the Co-Chairs for the Annual Dinner Committee, and is a member of the Membership Committee, Community Day Committee, and the Grad Spree Committee. Jared is honored to be the newest member of the Chamber Executive Board and looks forward to serving in that capacity, as well!
Outside of The Pavilion and the chamber, Jared is active in his church, Community of Christ, where he serves as the Worship Decorator and is Co-Chair of the Special Services Committee. He is also a certified volunteer for Hospice of Southern Illinois and is very proud to be one of the Directors for the Red Carpet Gala for five consecutive years.
Another passion of Jared’s is volunteering to help our veterans. He serves on the Welcome Home Planning Committee for Veterans Honor Flight of Southern Illinois.
The highlight of Jared’s volunteer work is the decade long work he has given to children in the arts. Jared has worked with a couple of area arts-related non-profits but is most proud of the work he has done with Kre8ive Fine Arts Academy - - serving on the Board of Directors since its inception in 2012 and serving as President of the Board since 2015. Jared is the proud Papa of Mr. Parker, his Miniature Poodle, and thanks his parents, Jim & Emma Lou Garrison for instilling in him the importance and love of community service.
The first Distinguished Member Award was given in 1959 to Dr. James Felts. Last year’s winner was Ashley Gott. Past winners of the Distinguished Member Award can be viewed at www.marionillinois.com/award-winners.html.
Our finalists have been nominated by fellow chamber members and selected by the Awards Committee.
The winner of the Distinguished Member Award will be announced during the 99th annual Marion Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet & Auction on Friday, January 17 at The Pavilion. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. Tickets to attend are $65/person, $500/table (seats 8) or $750 for a table of 12 and are available by calling the Marion Chamber of Commerce at 618.997.6311 or visiting www.marionillinois.com.