Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Chamber Exec Sees Big Picture 'We Have an Eye toward the Community as a Whole'

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Chamber Exec Sees Big Picture 'We Have an Eye toward the Community as a Whole'

Article excerpt

The new man at the helm of the Clay County Chamber of Commerce,

Morris B. "Mike" Scott, said that ribbon-cutting ceremonies to

open new businesses are the fun side of his job, but the real

job of the chamber is to be the voice of business in Clay

County. And he plans a grass-roots approach to fulfill that part

of his job by getting out to personally meet business owners and

find out their day-to-day concerns.

"In order for business to be successful in Clay County, Clay

County has to be successful," said Scott, who began his duties

Feb. 3 as the new executive vice president of the Clay County

Chamber of Commerce. Scott replaces Kel Huehn, who cited

commuting distance from his Atlantic Beach home in his

resignation letter.

That's why economic development is also a large concern for

Scott, as well as controlled and planned growth for the county

and keeping a finger on the pulse of the schools and

infrastructure.

"We have an eye toward the community as a whole," Scott said.

The chamber interacts with city and county officials, and

heading the economic side of the chamber is the Committee of

100. Scott and a delegation of Committee of 100 members have

just returned from meetings with state legislators and the

Florida Chamber of Commerce in Tallahassee. On their 1997 agenda

is: adequate education funding for Clay County, state business

issues, sales tax amnesty for chambers, and funding for the

Branan Field-Chaffee Road highway.

"We have been heavily involved in pushing Branan Field-Chaffee

Road. I was involved in this since I was Ex-O [executive officer

of Cecil Field Naval Air Station] in 1986 and I think the

chamber has been a strong proponent of that since Day 1," Scott

said.

Scott's 28-year Navy career began after graduation in 1966 from

the University of Texas at Austin. From there he went through

flight training in Pensacola and Texas. Scott first moved to

Clay County in 1967 as a Navy ensign at Cecil Field. He flew the

A-7 Corsair with the "Gunslingers" of VA-105 and flew more than

120 combat missions during the Vietnam War off the USS Kitty

Hawk. He served as air boss on the USS Saratoga and as executive

officer of Cecil Field.

While executive officer, he sat on the board of the Clay County

chamber from 1987 to '89, appointed by the Navy. He attended

Naval War College, worked in the Chief of Naval Operations

Congressional Policy Office, commanded a squadron and was the

commanding officer of Chase Field NAS in Beeville, Texas. Scott

also had joint tours flying the AV-8A Harrier and as the deputy

commander of the Southwest Air Defense Sector at March Air Force

Base in California. After retiring as a captain in 1993, Scott

worked for Lanahan Lumber Co. …

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