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Business and Industry Awards Gala

Known as the local version of the Academy Awards, the Hancock Chamber Business & Industry Awards Gala, held annually in August, recognizes outstanding achievements in citizenship, industry and business at the Hollywood Casino Grand Ballroom. The annual production includes a reception, sit-down dinner and video presentations featuring the award winners. A silent auction benefits the Hancock County Community Development Foundation.  Tickets for the gala are traditionally sold out with over 500 people attending.

Recognition of Citizens and Businesses

The Chamber has been honoring exemplary citizens and businesses for decades. Award winners are elected by members of the Hancock Chamber of Commerce for Businesses of the Year representing Bay St. Louis, Waveland, Diamondhead, and Kiln/Hancock County. The Top 10 Outstanding Citizens of the Year are recognized by the Hancock Chamber of Commerce, with one being elected as Citizen of the Year by members of the chamber. The Industry of the Year Award is selected by the Hancock County Port & Harbor Commission. The Nonprofit of the Year category was added in 2022.  Nonprofit of the Year is open for nominations and elected by members of the Hancock Chamber.

Midyear Meeting & State of the County Address

This annual signature event is held every May and is one of the largest gatherings of Hancock Chamber members — making it one of the best business networking opportunities of the year. The Midyear Meeting highlights accomplishments of the past year, sets the stage for the upcoming year and recognizes the change of leadership at the Board of Directors. The Chamber also announces the recipient of the Jody Compretta Person of Passion Award for outstanding contributions to community and economic development in Hancock County. The late Jody Compretta was an entrepreneur, business leader and philanthropist who served as president of the Chamber of Commerce in 2002 and 2004 and was the inaugural chairman of the Hancock Community Development Foundation in 2006. The marina inside the Bay St. Louis Harbor is named in his memory.

Swing for the Cause Golf Classic

The Hancock Chamber and the Hancock County Community Development Foundation invite you to participate in the annual Swing for the Cause Golf Classic. Each year in October, over 100 golfers participate for a chance to win great prizes and to help make a difference in Hancock County. The tournament raises money to benefit the Hancock County Community Development Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 public charity established by the Hancock Chamber to act as an umbrella organization for 20 non-profit causes for projects with a broad community focus. The specific purposes of incorporation are to sponsor and support educational and community programs that stimulate job creation, foster small business growth, workforce development, historic preservation and the arts. Don’t miss the chance to be a champion for our Hancock County community.

Business After Hours

Business After Hours are held monthly on the third Thursday from 5 - 7 p.m. Regarded as the area’s best customer development opportunity, these events showcase member businesses and provide an evening of networking for members. People do business with Chamber members, so come meet and network with fellow members. For information on the next Business After Hours, check out the Chamber Calendar, call us at 228-467-9048 or

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