New group of leaders steps up

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They don’t just bring in new clients or close big deals. Although they are high-achieving and successful in their chosen fields, this special group of people share not just an age camaraderie but a genuine concern for our community.

The Young Arrows Professionals represent an arm of the Carmel Chamber of Commerce which is doing more than just building businesses. They are building leaders.

Although they do not get to directly witness their labor bear fruit – that usually takes place on Christmas morning when underprivileged children look under the tree – the younger-than-40 contingent of the chamber is busy during the month of December collecting toys anyway. The toys will be for girls and boys who otherwise might not have a reason to smile or a feeling of hope this holiday season.

Katie Smardo is the chairperson of the project, and the spirit which motivates her and her committee shines through when she talks about it.

“The idea behind the toy drive is in line with part of Arrows’ mission, and our membership consistently communicates that community service and giving back are important to them,” Smardo said. “The mission of Arrows is to promote the development of the next generation’s leaders through networking and civic involvement for young professionals”

Clearly there is a feeling of philanthropy which is embedded in the psyche of the group.

Josh Carr is the current co-chair of the Young Arrows Professionals.

“In Hamilton County/Carmel, many of us are very privileged to live in a true community,” he said. “And like many great communities, people rally around the greater good. Support for a toy drive that gives to less fortunate children during the holidays provides a feeling of humbleness and gratitude. It reminds us that in our busy lives and business endeavors, there is still time to think of others.”

Joining Katie and Josh as Santa’s helpers are Ryan Room, Ryan Hawley, Beth Scott, Stephanie Newell, Stephanie Tapang, Anna Stumpf, Naydia Mills and Lisa Wirthwein.

No matter what anyone might say about the current state of our youth, the Young Arrows are on target and aiming for success. The fact that great leaders are emerging makes this a victory all the way around.

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