By Tommy Hartzog

Executive Director, HNG Chamber of Commerce

I was very fortunate to have been the son of a man who experienced life from a perspective few living today have. Born in 1920 and, consequently, a depression era teenager, my father knew suffering and deprivation. In his early 20s the war called and he answered by flying his requisite number of missions bombing Berlin and the Ploesti oil fields in his B-24 bomber. My father, like most of his generation, didn’t speak of the war unless asked and the answers were always very short and to the point- “no brag, just facts”. I spent much of my childhood at Fort Benning, GA and then watching my Dad “give back” by devoting his life to the service of others. He was a merchant in a small town in SC and he served the citizenry through the church, Meals on Wheels, literacy programs and the like.


We possess, in our community, an extraordinary wealth of persons who give back by serving others.


Lake Lure Town Mayor, Council and Committees

Chimney Rock Village Mayor, Council and Committees

Volunteer firefighters


Flowering Bridge

Rumbling Bald Resort BOD and Committees

The Chamber Board and Committees

The Olympiad

The Dirty Dancing Festival

The Lions Club


Friends of the Library

Gerton Community Center

Bat Cave Community Center

Bill’s Creek Community Center

Many Church Programs

Camp Lurecrest

Many businesses


The Humane Society


The Bible and much of literature refer to admonitions for humans to consider as we turn the pages of life.

“Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”


We see that example played out weekly in the community in which we are fortunate to reside.


In serving as your Director at the Chamber for over four years I have learned that most members join not for benefits or what the Chamber can do for them. They give their money to the Chamber to help fund operations and to be part of a cause, a movement if you will, that serves a significant purpose for our Gorge communities.


That is service.

Thank a member today.