The 2017 Ambassador of the Year:
    Leroy Santiago

  • Vancouver Chamber Announces Leroy Santiago as 2017 Ambassador of the Year

    The Greater Vancouver Chamber of Commerce (GVCC) announced Leroy Santiago of Global Security as the 2017 Ambassador of the Year award recipient at the December Holiday Heroes Luncheon event. Each year the Chamber designates one Wally Hornberger Award recipient, which is our Ambassador of the Year award winner. Santiago received the award from his attendance log at reoccurring and signature events, the level of difficulty of duties while volunteering, taking the initiative to mentor new members, a vote from ambassador peers, and points given by Ambassador Coordinator, Barb Holbrook. Harold Faires received the second Ambassador Award given out at the event, the GVCC's 2017 Rookie of the Year.

    Leroy Santiago was born in Hawaii in 1945 (Hakalau, Hawaii Big Island) and was raised on Oahu. He is the eldest of three siblings and graduated from Kailua High School in 1963. Next, he attended Bethany Bible College in Southern California. He served in the Navy from 1966-1970 and married his bride, Sandy in 1967. They will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary this month! Together they have raised three children, have six grandchildren, and now enjoy three great-grand children. Leroy worked for the UPS for 14 years as a package car driver in NW Portland and another 14 years as a Manager for Kelly Services. At Kelly Services he started in Vancouver, then moved to Spokane and Hawaii. He's returned to the pacific northwest and has worked for Global Security for the past nine years. "Every time I had a position in Vancouver I joined the Chamber of Commerce," Santiago explained, who was one of the very first Ambassadors while with Kelly Services. Leroy is an active participant at Life Point Church and has been to Sri Lanka on mission trips to minister to children. He also speaks at local retirement homes and shares his singing voice with the community.

    "Leroy is an exemplary volunteer. Not only does he have a positive, can-do attitude, he comes with an enormous skill set in relationship and community building. He's a joy to work with and get to know. We're very proud to have him on our GVCC Ambassador team, representing Southwest Washington's business community - front and center," said Barb Holbrook, the GVCC's Ambassador Team Coordinator.

    Harold Faires from Wendel Family Dental Centre was awarded the GVCC's 2017 Rookie of the Year honor at the Holiday Heroes Luncheon -- only two ambassador awards are presented per year. Harold has just completed his first year of service as a GVCC Ambassador and has represented the business community at many ribbon cutting/grand openings and networking events throughout 2017. He's also contributed his time to welcome attendees to our spring and fall workshop series, and signature events. Harold is from Aloha, Oregon and moved to Vancouver in 1982. Currently, Harold is Wendel Family Dental Centre's Marketing/IT Manager. Harold is also part of the Camas-Washougal Chamber, East Vancouver and the Salmon Creek/Hazel Dell Business Associations. He volunteers for Fort Vancouver National Trust, the Hazel Dell parade, and at other community events. His position at Wendel Family Dental allows him to get out in the community - you'll find him at health and wellness fairs across Clark County. "Being part of the GVCC Ambassador team allows me to interact with patients and the community that I live in, it makes me feel connected," said Faires.