Chamber welcomes Richard Shelby home from Washington

Former U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby was honored at the 122nd annual Meeting and Awards Celebration, hosted by the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama at the Bryant Conference Center Thursday night.

The event also recognized several local Chamber members making a difference in West Alabama.

This year, Jordan Morris of Ward, Scott, Morris Architecture won the highest honor given to an individual: the Charles H. Land Member of the Year award.

“It’s incredibly humbling to know that my time and service and all of the hours I spent working with the Chamber trying to help give back to this community is being recognized,” Morris said. “I am extremely thankful that they thought that I deserved it.”

Recognizing volunteers and business leaders is nothing new for the Chamber, but there’s one person who’s made an outsized impact on the area over his more than 40 years in Washington, D.C.

Chamber President and CEO Jim Page said Shelby’s contribution to West Alabama and the state as a whole is unquantifiable.

“This was long overdue for us to pay tribute to him,” Page said. “We have the unique privilege and opportunity to welcome him home. He’s coming back home and retiring to Tuscaloosa, so that’s what tonight’s all about.”

Shelby said he couldn’t have done everything he did without the backing of Alabamians.

“(These awards) feel good and it humbles all of us,” Shelby said. “It’s not what I did, it’s what people did. It’s a team effort, and that’s what’s going on here in Tuscaloosa tonight.”

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