When it came time for the Independence Chamber of Commerce to name the 2020 Business of the Year, Continental Siding was an obvious choice. Our owner, Alec Cook, joined the Chamber board of directors in the spring of 2020 right when the pandemic was at its worst. While luncheons and committee meetings weren’t able to happen in person, the chamber specifically needed members to step up with creativity, hard work, leadership, and Alec Cook did just that – he stepped up.
One of the ways in which Alec excelled as a member of the board of directors is that he recruited a group of Community Leaders and with their resources, the chamber was able to continue programming new initiatives that the community desperately needed. As Alec Cook realized that Continental Siding wasn’t hit nearly as hard by the pandemic as many of the smaller businesses in the area, he knew that it was the morally responsible thing to do so that the Chamber could support every business of all sizes throughout the community.
Another reason that Continental Siding was chosen as the 2020 Business of the Year by the Independence Chamber of Commerce was their approach to volunteerism. Thanks to Alec Cook, Continental Siding has always placed a priority on charitable efforts and the COVID-19 pandemic was no exception. Instead of just saving money and not doing anything, Alec Cook knew the right thing to do would be to try and be part of the solution and give hope when things were scary for many in the local community. In addition, Alec Cook started a 100 Days of Giving program from day one of the stay at home order. Some of the initiatives that were done at that time were to provide a matching donation of $10,000 to City Union Mission, donated 30,000 meals to Harvesters, gave $500 gift cards to 32 single mothers in need, paid a 20% pay bonus to all staff for all three payrolls of the stay-at-home order, and also provided a $500 “someone in need” bonus to all staff members so they could be generous to someone they knew that was in need.
The Independence Chamber of Commerce recognizes that more than the volume of sales, it’s these charitable initiatives that truly make a business strong. And, as Alec has always said, “I care much more about how we do business than how much business we do.” It is because of this that they were proud to select Continental Siding as the Chamber Business of the Year.