From the Yelm Business Assn. (YBA) Board of Directors:
The Yelm Business Assn. (YBA) Board of Directors announced today [Dec. 5] they have voted to dissolve the organization. While there was broad community support for the work of the YBA, the challenges of getting members to join the board or volunteer on the various committees has brought a halt to the YBA Strategic Plan and other programs. Other South Sound business associations also had challenges in maintaining continuity after their founding, yet restarted when their community’s business interests matured. One such example is the Olympia Downtown Assn., which has grown and become quite active in their influencing city’s policies.
YBA Board President Cynthia Schmier said this:
“While I am saddened the YBA Board is taking steps to dissolve, all of our members who volunteered have been enriched in working with a broad cross-section of our business community and in bringing forth new ideas that will be a lasting legacy. This organization began in early 2013 with a conversation of local business owners and grew into bringing about changes in how our local government views and interacts with the business community. We thank the many community leaders, business owners, and residents who joined with us in initiating changes in our city’s interactions with Yelm’s economic contributors.”
We are proud of these fine accomplishments:
– First Town Hall Public Forum held in Yelm in over 12 years, March 10, 2015,
– Championed transparency from Mayor Harding and his city hall staff,
– Requested a Yelm hotel/motel tax committee to disseminate funds,
– Beautification Committee Draft Report released and published in newspaper,
– YBA Board member Molly Carmody elected to Yelm city council,
– YBA and The Triad Arts Theater co-sponsored the first community arts/crafts show, Dec. 12, 2015.
– ONLY organization that responded to the City of Yelm’s Comprehensive Plan updates.
– Submitted a Food Trucks regulations proposal to the Yelm council allowing food trucks to operate here with clear, written standards.
– Presented to council a proposal naming the Community Center for the Wolf Family, who served Yelm with distinction for over 8 decades. A community discussion ensued.
– YBA Board representative at the City Administrator candidates Round 1 Interview panel.
– Invited Yelm businesses to join in first annual Winter Lights decorations.
– YBA Board of Directors invited Interim Mayor Foster and City Administrator Grayum to meet.
– Co-sponsored Farron McCloud, Nisqually Tribal Chairman to a Yelm Public Forum,
– Proposed the establishment of a Yelm Arts Commission to the city council,
– Proposed the Yelm Water Tower be restored and submitted to the Washington Historical Register for consideration,
– Co-hosted Yelm’s first annual Jazz Fest,
– The Yelm city council adopted Food Truck regulations first proposed by the YBA.
– Invited Yelm businesses to join YBA’s co-sponsored 2nd annual Winter Lights decor.
In closing, the YBA Board of Directors has voted to disseminate the balance of funds to Experience Olympia and Beyond, specifically earmarked towards promoting tourism in Yelm. We have enjoyed being the catalyst in moving the community forward in discussions, awareness and changes on a wide variety of issues for the betterment of Yelm’s businesses and will remain actively involved in our city.
YBA BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Dan Crowe, Executive Director, Founding & Executive Board Member, Crowe Law
Cynthia Schmier, President, Founding & Executive Board Member, Re/Max Country
Steve Craig, Vice-President, Founding & Executive Board Member, Yelm property investor
Bill Hashim, Treasurer, Executive Board Member, Citizens Action Committee
Steve Klein, Secretary, Founding & Executive Board Member, Yelm Blogger
Marian Lixcandru, Pizzeria LaGitana, owner
Kellie Petersen, Gordon’s Garden Center, owner
Scott Bradley, Military/JBLM Liaison
Blogger Klein was the YBA Secretary and a Founding and Executive Board Member.