“LESSONS ON LEADERSHIP” was the theme for the graduation ceremony at the Country Club of the Crystal Coast in Pine Knoll Shores March 16 to salute the Leadership Carteret Class of 2016.
Travis Burt, co-founder of Transportation Impact in Emerald Isle and a member of the Carteret County Chamber of Commerce Board
of Directors, was the commencement speaker.
“Leadership Carteret is symbolic of the sense of community we have here and our collective culture of working hard to help each other,” he said.
“At Transportation Impact, we have enrolled members of our staff in Leadership Carteret each of the last four years. I think any of them will tell you what a difference there is between how much they thought they knew about the area before spending 10 weeks in the program, and what they know now. The course does a great job cultivating a knowledge and sense of pride in our community and comradery among peers.
“Leadership Carteret is a catalyst for creating leaders. Being a leader means being someone whose lead others are willing to follow. Being a leader also means being able to follow as well.
“Leaders are respected in no small part because they show respect for others. Leaders are part of the team, not above it.”
Responding on behalf of the Leadership Class of 2016, Janita Gonzalez of the Island Inn of Atlantic Beach, said: “I thank the chamber for making such a class possible and for recognizing the need to better connect this county’s potential leaders with each other. This class is more than just a meet-and-greet or an introduction to Carteret County businesses.
“This experience gives us first-hand knowledge of how our county operates and how our personal businesses play a part in it all. Most importantly, it affords us all the chance to build long-term partnerships with each other as well as the rest of the county. It is because of these relationships that our businesses can become stronger. None of this can be done as a spectator.
“Please let us not forget the people of our county. It is their southern hospitality and pride for where they live that keeps drawing more and more people to our area. We have hundreds of thousands of people who visit our area every year just to get a glimpse of where we live every day.
“All of this is not accomplished by any one business or individual. It is a network, a team, a culture to make Carteret County the best it can be for our citizens and our guests.
“Reflect on the words ‘ripple effect.’ It is the continuing and spreading results of an effort or action. My gift to all of you is this single stone.
“Let this pebble be a reminder that if left on a shelf or in a drawer, it will have no purpose but to take up space. If tossed in a body of water much like the water that surrounds our county, it will cause a ripple effect.
“None of us will ever truly know how one of our ideas or actions might cause a ripple effect that will change things for the better. Be responsible for putting things into motion. Our Leadership Class will not be known as the best class ever because of who attended in 2016, but will be known as the best because of the ripple effect we will cause.”
The chamber is pleased to serve as “pebble headquarters.” Get yours at 801 Arendell St., Suite 1, Morehead City. Ripple ripple.
Mike Wagoner, President
Carteret County Chamber of Commerce