CLOVER — The Greater Clover Chamber of Commerce kicked off the town’s 125th anniversary celebration and honored local individuals and a business during its recent annual meeting.
The Sept. 20 meeting was held at The Lodge at Cherokee Farms. The keynote speaker, York mayor and local historian Eddie Lee, talked about “A Walk Through Clover’s Past.”
The following awards were presented:
• M.L. Ford & Sons – a fourth-generation family business, owned by Brian and Lisa Hall – was named the 2012 Business of the Year. The business, which is Clover’s oldest, is 122 years old.
The business, housed in two 8,000-square-foot buildings along Main Street, comprises a furniture store and a funeral home, separated by a parking lot. The business was started in 1890 by Brian’s great grandfather, M.L. Ford, when it was common for the local furniture store to provide caskets for the deceased. The family owners included Brian’s parents, Martin and Harriett Hall.
Brian, the only member of his generation who stayed with the business, earned a business degree from Clemson and studied at Gupton-Jones College of Mortuary Science in Atlanta.
Lisa’s family also owned funeral homes in North Carolina; she met Brian while visiting her brother at Gupton-Jones. They were married in 1983. Brian spends most of his time on the funeral home side; Lisa is the primary buyer for the furniture store. In 2008, the family opened a second funeral home in Lake Wylie.
M.L. Ford staff members, in addition to the Halls, are Jay Dover, Ed Stewart, Joe Lee McCarter, George Pendleton, Amanda Robinson and Chris Hall.
• Carla Pendleton was named 2012 Citizen Volunteer of the Year. Pendleton , who was born in Charlotte and raised in the Bethel community, has for 15 years served as chairwoman for Clover’s Feis Chlobhair, an annual event sponsored by the Clover chamber. She and her husband, Dick, own Pendleton’s Sporting Goods in Lake Wylie.
• New chamber chairwoman Nina Feemster presented an award recognizing Linda McCallum for her service the past two years as chairwoman of the Greater Clover Chamber of Commerce. McCallum is executive director for the Clover and Lake Wylie YMCA branches.
During her time in office, McCallum has enhanced existing chamber programs, such as the annual meeting, and introduced new programs, such as a Women in Business program. She has served on the chamber board from 2008 to present.
She has been a member of the Clover Rotary Club for years and is now the president. She heads up the annual poinsettia sale fundraiser and assists with the annual Rotary spring benefit.
This year, she was instrumental in helping to start an after-school tutoring program at the Roosevelt Center. She committed to staffing the program, which provides tutoring services for 14 children from Kinard Elementary School.
• Retiring chamber board member Judy Lark was given an award for her service to the chamber for the past five years, from 2007-2012. Feemster presented the award.