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Justin Duncan completes Capstone Experience Program at CedarStone Bank Donelson Branch

Pictured above with Justin is Donelson Branch Manager Lisa Brown and Relationship Manager Robert McDonald.

Recently Justin Duncan, senior at McGavock High School completed over 40 hours with CedarStone Bank in the Capstone Experience program. Justin has been involved in the program at the Donelson Branch since October 2014. A Capstone experience is a project that allows students to learn about themselves by moving an idea or dream toward a topic of interest, specialization, community need, or career choice.

McGavoch Senior Justin Duncan completes Capstone Program Experience with Cedarstone Bank Donelson Branch

The entire Donelson Branch congratulated McGavock senior Justin Duncan recently on his completion of the Capstone Experience program at CedarStone Bank. Pictured from left to right is Willie McDonald, Naaman Stillwell, Marilyn Kaczmarski, Kati Barbeau, Justin Duncan, Lisa Brown, Layla Hejazi and Robert McDonald. 

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CedarStone Bank has an entry-level opening for a Teller/Social Media Coordinator in our Mt. Juliet office. This is a great opportunity for someone ready to learn banking and to utilize your social media skills in a professional setting. If interested, please click here to contact Beth Schulze, Mt. Juliet Branch Manager.

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Outgoing chamber chair, John Bryan of CedarStone Bank, Sue Vanatta, retiring chamber president and CEO, and incoming president and CEO Melanie Minter. Photo courtesy of the Wilson Post.

On Thursday, February 6, the Lebanon/Wilson County Chamber of Commerce held its annual awards banquet at Lebanon's Capitol Theater. Over 320 people attended the sold-out event to recognize Sue Vanatta as she retired from the chamber as president and CEO after 23 years of service.

The new president and CEO, Melanie Minter was introduced at the event, and the new board of directors and board chairman John Bradshaw were installed.

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John Bryan, 2014 Ambassador of the Year Linda Spencer, Melanie Minter. Photo courtesy of the Wilson Post.

Outgoing chairman of the board, CedarStone vice president John Bryan, reflected on his term of office and expressed his gratitude for the vision and hard work of the chamber’s leadership.

Address by John Bryan

Ladies and gentlemen, 2014 has flown by. We have experienced an action-packed year. We celebrated our 90th birthday as a chamber, we said goodbye to a dear friend and leader for 23 years in Sue Vanatta as she retired on December 31st, and we will said hello and welcome to our new President for 2015 and beyond.

In setting our goals this past year, I know we set the bar high. Many of our goals we accomplished, some we fell short. But for the most part, we succeeded in the task at hand. Your chamber remains strong and vibrant in the communities we serve. And I know, with the leadership we have in place for this year and years to come, your Lebanon/Wilson County Chamber will continue to create commerce, provide services that help equip its membership, and embrace our membership with engaging events and informative meetings.

Tonight is a night of celebration. We plan this event each year to celebrate with our membership. Ladies and gentlemen, everything good that happens in our community, your chamber has its hands right in the middle of it.

Think about it: ground-breakings, ribbon cuttings, educational events, industry appreciation, recruitment of businesses and industry, tourism and special events – anything that we celebrate, Christmas, Halloween, St. Patrick’s Day…your chamber is in the middle of it.
Tonight we will recognize many local businesses and some individuals that have stood out among the crowds. These awards are given to very deserving and honorable recipients and the committees that choose these winners take their job very seriously. I congratulate you all and, with that, let us begin the 2014 Cedar Tree Award presentation.

Before I introduce my friend, John Bradshaw, and pass the gavel for 2015, I want to take this time to thank my wife of 26 years for putting up with me. Like I said earlier in my remarks, this year was busy. It was actually an emotional roller coaster for me. In the midst of serving as your Chairman, Kim and I worked on getting our home prepared for my daughter’s wedding. We pulled that event off in June and from that point on, things seemed to get a little bit easier. I would also like to thank my parents, T.A. and Jean Bryan, for their support. Every time I turned around at a ribbon cutting or business-after-hours, T.A. and Jean were there. Thanks for always being there.

Thanks to my employer, Bob McDonald and CedarStone Bank and my co-workers for allowing me to be away each and every week at some sort of chamber function, meeting, or ribbon cutting. Melynda Bounds, our Lebanon office manager, has covered for me too many times to mention and I appreciate you for your friendship, patience and dedication.

John Bryan also recognized the chamber’s board members and those who served in leadership roles:

Economic Development: Jud Nave
Government Relations: Phil Carter
Sports Council: Paul Jewell
Membership: Melanie Minter
Tourism: Debbie Stewart
Education: Scott Jasper
Treasurer: Brenda Burkett

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CedarStone Bank president and CEO Bob McDonald, Paul Bauman Award of Excellence winner, flanked by CedarStone's John Sloan and former chamber chairman Carolyn Christoffersen.

On January 22, CedarStone Bank's John Sloan, now the active Chairman of the Mt Juliet Chamber of Commerce, and Carolyn Christoffersen, the former Chairman of the Chamber, announced the Chamber Choice Award winners at Covey Rise. Among them was CedarStone president and CEO Bob McDonald, who was honored with the Paul Bauman Award of Excellence. The award is given annually to a business person who, through his or her community and civic efforts, has made our community a better place to live and work. The award is named after Paul Bauman, an influential businessman who was instrumental the early success of the Mt. Juliet Chamber of Commerce.

Paul Bauman
Even though Paul passed way in 1996, he will always be remembered as one of Mt Juliet’s most respected and influential businessmen. Paul was a 1959 graduate of The Citadel (where he rose to Lt. Colonel), was President of John Deal Companies, a member of the Board of Trust at Cumberland University, a founding member of the Mt Juliet Breakfast Rotary Club, and was active with Camp Easter Seals and the United Way. He lived his life with a belief in giving back. His favorite quote was “to whom much is given, much is required.” In 1988, John Deal Companies was awarded the United Way Advocate Award, given to a company which best represents the United Way spirit of giving. Paul demanded little attention for his good deeds, preferring to serve quietly, out of the spotlight. He was a well-respected pillar of the community and is still remembered today for his noble character, strong ethics, dedication, and his passion for quietly serving others.

Given annually to a deserving individual, the Mt. Juliet Chamber of Commerce Paul Bauman Award of Excellence is the highest honor the Chamber can bestow upon on a business leader in our community. As this year’s recipient, CedarStone Bank founder and president, Bob McDonald continues to exemplify those important and time-tested business principles for which this award is named. As a respected member of our business community, Bob also quietly serves his community by sharing his time, talents, and treasures. Bob also encourages everyone on the CedarStone Bank team to do likewise.

Congratulations to Bob; you have the community's gratitude for you have done and continue to do each day to make our community such a special to live, work, shop, play, and pray.

 
Mt. Juliet Chamber Choice Awards
Gaye Lynn Wilson, Volunteer of the Year
Kandi McElhannon, Ambassador of the Year
Tina Hutenpiller, Chairman's Award
Dorie Mitchell, Leadership Wilson
Billie & Dwight Belew, Lifetime Achievement
Bob McDonald, Paul Bauman Award of Excellence
Ray Daniel, Chick Fil-A, Business of the Year
James Christensen, MJPD, Community Enhancement of the Year
Marquita Hall & Carmelita Stafford, Sister's Whimzy, Business Women of the Year
 
 
 
The following is chamber chairman John Sloan's address to the banquet attendees.
 
Ten years ago tonight, I stood before this group and passed the ceremonial gavel to Judy White. It’s hard to believe it’s been ten years, but it most certainly has. Time really does fly. As the noted philosopher Ferris Bueller once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
So let’s take Ferris at his word and take a look at what’s happened in the last ten years...

Ten years ago:
  • Providence did not exist
  • My hair was brown
  • The “worst economy since the Great Depression” was still two years away
  • My son David was not quite one year old
  • We had no Starbucks in Mt. Juliet
  • I was about 30 days away from going to work at CedarStone Bank
  • The new high school had not yet opened
  • The font size on my speech was a lot smaller
  • The Music City Star was not yet operational
  • The Titans had a good football team
  • The City of Mt. Juliet consisted of roughly 15,000 residents
  • Many of you were not here
 
So let’s see just how Mt. Juliet has changed. How many of you were not here then? If you have lived and/or worked in Mt. Juliet less than 10 years, please stand up. THIS is how Mt. Juliet has changed in the last ten years. We’ve been blessed by these new folks and their ideas, their contributions. 

You may sit back down.

mt-juliet-chamber-awards-cedarstone-bank-1Each one of those folks was attracted to Mt. Juliet because of the work done by those of you who didn’t stand up…those who laid the groundwork for the explosive growth we are now experiencing. The explosive growth that occurred, by the way, during the worst economy since the Great Depression. And it’s the contributions of everyone in this room that make Mt. Juliet what it is…a friendly, compassionate, progressive city of over 25,000 people.  

You’ve all helped make Mt. Juliet a city that compares favorably with any “edge city” in the country. You’ve helped make Mt. Juliet one of the fastest growing cities in the country. You’ve helped make it a city with one of the best school systems in the state of Tennessee. You’ve helped make it an “IT” city, a playful City, and a business-friendly city. In short, you’ve helped make it a great place to live, work, shop, worship, and play.
We truly have a great thing going here. But it won’t keep going by itself. Progress is a process, and that process requires vision, planning, execution, and follow-up. So, let’s make 2015 a year of continuing – and expanding – the process of progress. Let’s plan for the next 10 years – and beyond.

Let’s have housing that meets the needs of all those who want and need to live here.

Let’s have consistently applied zoning and land-use plans that serve our city well, but do not serve as a barrier to those seeking to build a business or home in Mt. Juliet.

Let’s put the infrastructure in place – before it is needed – to attract quality growth in the office, industrial, retail, and residential sectors.

Let’s continue the work of the small business owners and civic leaders who have made Mt. Juliet what it is today…people like Hale Moss, Tina Hutsenpiller, Phil Smartt, Bill Robinson, Ed Rice, Paul Baumann. 

And let’s not forget that, like those folks I just mentioned, we are all called to serve, so get out there find a way to make a difference. Find a way to make this great city just a little bit better than it was before.

How will your Chamber help make Mt. Juliet better?
  • By advocating for the businesses – large and small – who call Mt. Juliet home.
  • By connecting Chamber members and citizens with the resources they need to be successful.
  • By promoting Chamber members in the community.
  • And by supporting Chamber members with the information they need to start, grow, and operate their businesses.
These are the things your Chamber does every day. These are the items on Mark’s and Anita’s “to-do” list every day. They define the purpose of the Chamber, the reason it exists. But they can’t do it by themselves. They need our help. So, are you ready to contribute your time, talent, and treasure to help make Mt. Juliet better? 

I know you are. How do I know this? 

Because you’re here tonight. Because you’ve given of your time and resources to help those who need it. Because you’ve made Mt. Juliet what it is today. Let’s all continue that work – the process of progress – to make Mt. Juliet even better. Let’s make the next ten years even better than the last ten years. 

Let’s make it the best ten years ever.
Thank you.
 

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Mt. Juliet Branch Manager Beth Schultze and Girl Scout Troup 1200

Girl Scout Troop 1200 recently visited CedarStone's Mt. Juliet branch to learn about money and banking. The girls learned how to write up a deposit slip, make a deposit, and get a receipt. They got to see behind teller row, where we showed them how money is stored securely, organized, and counted. Branch manager Beth Schultze talked to the girls about the importance of having a bank account. She also showed the girls how machines can detect counterfeit money mixed in with real bills.

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CedarStone Bank Customer Service Representative Addison Rogers works with the scouts on banking documents.

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