Partners in Prosperity
At the hub of the community, the Lawton Fort Sill Chamber of Commerce and the City of Lawton are paving the way and progressively building a bright and prosperous community with a host of exciting and collaborative initiatives. Working with area leaders and all stakeholders who call this exciting city home, they are shepherding a vision of excellence for the community.
“We work very closely in everything we do, to create new opportunities that advance the highest quality of life and economic prosperity throughout Lawton-Fort Sill,” said Brenda Spencer-Ragland, Chamber president & CEO. “Every part of our partnership aims to build a stronger, more vibrant community. We want folks to know about the wonderful amenities and everything that we have to offer, whether a visitor who’s only here for a day, or a business or new family considering spending a lifetime.”
Facilitating the excitement and synergy of their cordially productive roles, the Chamber and city offices are both downtown in close proximity to one another.
“It’s the perfect setting, because we work hand-in-hand on a multitude of issues, almost daily,” said Mayor Stan Booker.
One outstanding initiative that is rippling throughout the community and continuing to blossom with positive outcomes and reinforcement from city leaders is the Certified Healthy program. This state-sponsored program aims to recognize healthy communities and entities that adopt habits of wellness, to include providing opportunities for exercise and healthy diets to citizens.
“This marks the City of Lawton’s third year of earning an excellence level of certification in the program,” Booker said. “It’s the highest level that any participant can attain. We’re extremely proud of it, because in the long-term it helps us build a better community, for businesses and residents alike.”
The Chamber is earning kudos, too, achieving the Certified Healthy Business excellence level ranking – the highest possible – this year. Chamber members are offered the tools and resources, too, and are encouraging members and businesses to pursue their own healthy business designations, which assists in advancing the wellness of community as a way to promote their businesses.
“Quality of life is a hugely important economic driver,” Spencer-Ragland said. “When we promote opportunities for good health, it’s integral to our goals, which are to create the highest quality of life that we can possibly achieve. When large numbers of people are able to get healthy through diet and exercise, it builds a stronger, more resilient community.”
An annual event that’s getting plenty of attention is the Armed Forces Day Parade. This patriotic event is held every May, weather permitting.
“It’s one of the largest military parades in the U.S.,” Spencer-Ragland said, “featuring marching bands, community and business floats, military officials and veterans who pay tribute to all men and women who have valiantly served our nation.”
Before, during and after the parade, the city provides logistical support and security, including street closures and route monitoring to ensure that the festivities are enjoyed by all, Booker said.
When it comes to downtown celebrations, the Chamber and city lead the way, especially with the festive Ware on C, a monthly gathering downtown, featuring food, fun and music.
“It’s a fresh new concept, funded by the city and the Chamber to promote our downtown Ware District,” Booker said. “It’s a fellowship event that builds community. Everyone comes out for a great night together.”
The community is connected through one extra-large collaborative, The Lawton Proud Initiative. Leaders and businesses from all walks of life are sharing the good news about living in, shopping in and experiencing Lawton. It’s easy now to find out what’s going on. Just pop onto the Lawton Proud website, www.lawtonproud.com, to post an event or good news, and keep the city proud.