The keynote speaker for the evening was Renee Powell, owner and head golf professional at Clearview Golf Course in East Canton. She spoke about her family’s history in golf and the struggles they faced as blacks in a predominately white sport. They had many barriers along the way but never gave up. Her father founded and built Clearview Golf Course and Renee was only the second black female golfer in the LPGA. She now speaks all over the world and has an honorary membership in the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Scotland. What an inspiring story, thank you Renee for sharing it with us.

Also, during the evening, the Women’s Division presented their annual Athena Award. This year’s recipient was Pat Gates. The Athena Award is a national award presented to an outstanding business or professional woman who has attained and embodies the highest level of professional excellence in her business or profession, has devoted time and energy to improve the quality of life for others in the community and actively assists women in realizing their leadership potential. Pat certainly has far exceeded all these criteria. Pat was a math teacher at Marlington High School and was the first female athletic director in a public school in Ohio. She is very involved in the Alliance community with the University of Mount Union Alumni Council, Alliance Kiwanis Club, Alliance Area Habitat for Humanity, Union Avenue United Methodist Church, Alliance Community Pantry and many others. Congratulations Pat on a well-deserved recognition!!

The past Athena Award and Woman of the Year recipients presented their fifth annual scholarship. The Athena/Woman of the Year Scholarship is presented to a deserving female high school senior who has demonstrated community involvement, academic achievement and leadership. This year’s recipient of the $1000 scholarship was Fatima Meza, a senior at Alliance High School. Congratulations Fatima!!

The evening could not have happened without the financial support of our sponsors: the Platinum Sponsors were Alliance Ventures, Carnation Security, Consumers National Bank, Copeland Oaks, Huntington National Bank and Nationwide Insurance- the Burgess Group. Gold Sponsor was AA Hammersmith Insurance. Silver Sponsors were Clifton Larson Allen LLP and the Eastern Stark County Safety Council. Your generous support is greatly appreciated, THANK YOU!!


Renee Powell is one of the most resilient and persevering athletes of our time. Raised on the East Canton, Ohio golf course built by her father, William “Bill” Powell, during times of racial adversity and segregation, Renee learned early on what it meant to excel against the odds. By the age of three she was swinging a golf club for the first time, and early into her teenage years she had won more than 30 tournaments. In 1967, she became the second African-American woman to compete on the LPGA Tour. As a tour player she competed in more than 250 professional tournaments and won the 1973 Kelly Springfield Open in Brisbane, Australia. 

Following her time on the LPGA tour, Powell dedicated her life to diversifying the game of golf. She became an International Goodwill Ambassador traveling to Africa on more than 25 trips to host golf clinics.  She has also committed her life to expanding golf to more youth, women, seniors, minorities, and military veterans. In 2011, she launched Clearview H.O.P.E (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) a cost-free, year-round therapeutic and recreational golf programs specifically for women veterans. As a sought-after public speaker, Renee has informed, inspired, and enlightened countless audiences locally, nationally, and internationally. 

Renee has earned countless awards during her more than five decades in the game of golf.  In 2015, she became one of two American women initially given honorary membership into the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Scotland. Some of her other notable awards include; being named PGA of America First Lady of Golf, the LPGA Rolex For the Love of the Game Award, the PGA Tour Card Walker Award, the USGA Ike Grainger Award, and the LPGA Pioneer Award. In 2008, Renee became the third American, and the only women golfer, to ever receive an honorary doctorate from The University of St. Andrews, Scotland in its now 600 year history. In 2010, The University of Maryland Eastern Shore awarded Renee with an Honorary Doctorate of Public Service. 

Renee has also made strides in other areas of the golf industry including fashion and broadcasting. While living in London, England, she was one of the first women golfers to design her own clothing line. She has also commentated numerous golf tournaments on both CBS and ABC. 

Today, Renee is the LPGA/PGA Head Golf Professional at Clearview Golf Club in East Canton, Ohio where she’s keeping her father’s legacy of “Golf for Everyone” alive. Renee’s work extends throughout her community as a member of several boards including the Northern Ohio PGA, the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Mercy Medical Center, and Pathway Caring for Children, as well as a member of Rotary International.  

Renee offers a variety of speaking options including keynotes, luncheons, college orientations, commencements, golf clinics & workshops, and more. 


Alliance Area Chamber of Commerce

Annual Christmas Party!

St. Nicholas Romanian Orthodox Church

1621 S. Sawburg Ave.

Alliance, Ohio 44601

5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

$10.00 per person

  • Heavy Hors’doeuvres
  • Assorted Holiday Desserts
  • Beer and Wine

*Sponsored by M3 Mosaic Missional Movement


With generous support from the Alliance community, the Athena Scholarship Fund was established in 2013 by the Woman of the Year and Athena Leadership award recipients.   In collaboration with the Alliance Chamber of Commerce, a charitable fund agreement was set up with the Greater Alliance Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization.  Based on the same criteria as the Athena award, the scholarship is presented to a graduating female high school senior who exemplifies community service, academic achievement and leadership potential.  The honoree must reside within Alliance City, Marlington Local, Sebring or West Branch Local School Districts, and must attend and anticipate graduation from one of those schools, or from St. Thomas Aquinas.

To date, four scholarships have been awarded:

2014     Alexandrea Garrett     West Branch       NEOMed

2015     Alexis Austin                 Alliance             Capital University

2016     Alyssa Powers              Marlington        University of Akron

2017     Kaylen Sanor                West Branch     Ashland University

2018     Olivia Woods                 Sebring             University of Akron

The scholarship is paid directly from the Greater Alliance Foundation to the college, university, or other educational institution in which the recipient is enrolled.  Celebrate with us at the upcoming chamber annual dinner in February 2018, when the next Athena Scholarship recipient will be announced!

It is hoped that this scholarship, awarded annually, will continue in perpetuity.  Please consider this worthwhile initiative in your year-end charitable giving.  Your tax deductible check is payable to the Greater Alliance Foundation.  Write “Athena Scholarship” on the memo line and mail the check to the Foundation office:  960 W State Street, Suite 130, Alliance, OH 44601.  Or simply go to: and donate online.  Be sure to designate “Athena Scholarship.”  Your donation can be in honor of, or in memory of a significant woman in your life……….your grandmother, mother, or aunt; a sister or daughter; perhaps a special teacher or mentor.

With sincere gratitude for your ongoing support,

From the Woman of the Year/Athena Scholarship Committee


The weather for the 2018 Jim Fish Memorial Golf Scramble was challenging at best! The original date was rained out, that’s an understatement, we had 4’’’ of rain. The make-up date started out ok but ended with rain, but everyone still had a great time. The winning team was BJ Robb, Mike Sherban, Joe Bugara and Mike Bugara from Stifel with a score of 57. The team of Tom diDonato, Tony DiDonato, Scott Robb and Steve Paidas from J&B Fleet came in second place with a score of 62. Golfers raised $230 from the 50/50 raffle and the proximity hole for the American Cancer Society to be donated in Jim Fish’s name.


Contest winners included Mark Johnson- closest to the pin on #8; Doug Schwarz- closest to the pin on #15; Mike Bugara-longest putt on #18 and Frank Sacha- longest drive on #17.

Sue Snode and her staff at Tannenhauf Golf Club did another outstanding job of hosting us again this year. Thank you Sue, all your assistance is greatly appreciated.

The Chamber would also like to thank all the following people for making this year’s scramble another huge success:

  • Nationwide Insurance/ Dustin Burgess Group- Platinum sponsor
  • Alliance Ventures- Platinum Sponsor
  • Consumers National Bank- Platinum Sponsor
  • Lavery Auto Family for sponsoring the hole-in-one contest.
  • Mary Keister-Whitmyer and Patti Wallick from ServPro for supervising the accuracy contest.
  • All the hole sponsors. See the list in this newsletter.
  • All the companies that donated door prizes. See the list in this newsletter.
  • Christina, Betty and Haven from the Chamber office for all there work to make the day a huge success.

Thanks to all the golfers for helping make this year’s tournament truly special. We look forward to seeing you next year.



This fall, the Alliance Area Chamber of Commerce and University of Mount Union will join two individually successful events – the Carnation City Food Truck Rally and the 54th Annual ArtFest – on Saturday, September 22, 2018.

The Carnation City Food Truck Rally will take place from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. along Simpson Street west of Union Avenue. To date, a number of vendors have verbally committed to attend, including Twisted Krave, The Raging Avacado, Premiere Crepes, Ye Olde Sweet and Treats, Twist of Leona, Cheezylicious, Fat Freddie’s BBQ, The Beach Bum Truck and The Funky Trukeria.

The 54th Annual ArtFest, located at the Mount Union Campus Lakes, will take place from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. The event will feature original works by area artists in various media including watercolor, oil, collage, graphics, drawings, photography, jewelry, pen and ink, sculpture, glass mosaics, printmaking and mixed media works. In addition, functional craft vendors will be on hand featuring jewelry, fiber, woodworking, glass, enameling, lights, mirrors, purses/bags, candles and soaps.

Live demos, musical entertainment and a children’s activity will take place during the day.