Salute to Business, an annual event hosted by the Temple Chamber of Commerce, brought together around 400 business and community members on January 30, 2024, to acknowledge and celebrate community excellence, partnerships, growth, and development in the Temple community.
The event began with Taste of Temple, a showcase of local eateries. Guests sampled featured dishes from 7 Mares Tacos Y Mariscos, Clem Mikeska’s Bar-B-Q, Holiday Inn Temple-Belton, Jimmy John’s, Mas Fajitas, Nami Japanese Steakhouse, Nothing Bundt Cakes, and Whataburger. They also enjoyed music by Ray Palousek, a local pop, jazz, and R&B singer/songwriter and pianist who entertained during the reception.
The evening continued with Whitney Theriot, Interim President of the Temple Chamber, welcoming guests and sharing a message of 2023 highlights for the organization. Followed by a keynote presentation by Patricia J. Sulak, M.D.
Dr. Sulak is co-founder of Living WELL Aware, a renowned wellness educational program. She is a practicing physician, medical school professor, accomplished women’s health researcher, and national speaker. Her keynote presentation, titled "ILLNESS is Expensive. What Does It COST To Be HEALTHY?", provided a fresh perspective to guests on a journey of well-being designed with the end in mind.
“The data is clear and startling, health in the U.S. is declining despite extraordinary expenditure in prevention and treatment,” said Sulak. “Employers are spending major bucks on healthcare premiums and programs to elevate well-being with suboptimal return on investment.”
Sulak explained that the critical first step, design with the end in mind, is not included. She used an analogy of building a house and hiring contractors without first having the final plans.
“Our health is the most important construction project we will ever undertake. Our brain functions like a GPS system and needs a clear destination and an efficient route to get us there – that’s what Living Well Aware is all about,” said Sulak.
Kayla Landeros, Partner at West, Webb, Allbritton & Gentry, PC, who serves as Chair of the Chamber Board of Directors, took the stage to share the vision of the Temple Chamber through 2024. She then presented Robert Jones of Cadence Bank with a soaring eagle statue and a print of the Santa Fe Depot –tokens of appreciation for his leadership and service as Chair of the Chamber Board of Directors in 2023.
The Chamber also recognized major sponsors for Salute to Business including Platinum Sponsors City of Temple, Central National Bank, McLane Group, Wilsonart, Ludwick, Montgomery & Stapp. P.C., and Meta. As well as Diamond Sponsors Emerson Construction, Extraco Banks, Hill & Wilkinson General Contractors, and Temple Generating Station.
Events such as Salute to Business are made possible with the help of The Ambassadors of the Temple Chamber, a volunteer council of Chamber members who assisted with set-up, guest check-in, and clean-up among other duties.
“Chamber Ambassadors are such an essential part of everything the Chamber does,” said Bobbie Jo Young, Director of Membership Development for the Temple Chamber of Commerce. “We appreciate the time, dedication, and energy they bring to Chamber events big and small.”
Salute to Business is held on the fourth Tuesday of each January. For details on how to participate in Salute to Business 2025, please contact the Temple Chamber of Commerce at 254-773-2105 or www.templechamber.com.