Each year NNU honors an organization whose goals are to enrich, support and enhance the local Nampa community. This year the 2012 Eugene Emerson Award was given to the Nampa Chamber of Commerce.
The Nampa Chamber of Commerce predates NNU. It has roots in the community that extend back to 1892. It is the best-connected, dynamic business organization in the area and is represented by more than 550 businesses of all sizes.
The Nampa Chamber’s mission is to grow businesses, build community, and serve as the primary business and community advocate working to keep the City of Nampa a great place where business can prosper and families can live, work, play and shop. The Chamber is positioned to positively and creatively respond to challenges and opportunities because of its strong community partnerships with the city and local businesses.
NNU and the Nampa Chamber of Commerce have had a longstanding relationship that has spanned nearly a century. In 1917, President Wiley looked to the city of Nampa to stand alongside the emerging college. Wiley boldly announced his intent to initiate a $100,000 fundraising campaign. Of particular significance in this campaign is the fact that in 1917, the Nampa Chamber of Commerce agreed to support the program in the amount of $25,000. This proved to be a prudent investment on the part of the Chamber; for, by 1917, 71 families had moved to Nampa to be near the college. Thirty-eight of those families had purchased property valued at $158,000.
The Chamber has continued to have a significant role in building bridges between NNU, the community of Nampa and beyond. This relationship has benefited both the University and the surrounding community in countless ways. It is with appreciation for the difference the Chamber’s presence makes at NNU and in recognition of their contribution to the spirit of cooperation between community and the University, that NNU presented is pleased to presented Mr. Dan Puga, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Nampa Chamber of Commerce, the 2012 Eugene Emerson Award.
The Eugene Emerson Award was established in 1985 to acknowledge the spirit of cooperation that exists between the Treasure Valley and the University. The award was named for NNU founder Eugene Emerson, a Nampa businessman who also established a lumber company and later sold it to Windsor Lloyd of Lloyd Lumber Company. The award honors those who have contributed significantly to fostering that cooperation, and by so doing, draw attention to the mutual benefit gained by both the community and the University.