Member Spotlight: Richard Heath & Co.

With tax season in full swing, the accountants at Richard Heath & Co. near Surfside Beach are already working to help individuals and businesses file this year’s returns.

Richard Heath & Co. expects to file about 300 individual tax firms and 200 business returns, said Ronda Fania. She said they work to ensure every deduction available is used.

Two accountants – Fania and Richard Heath – with more than 40 years combined experience lead the firm which started in 1991. A certified public accounting firm, Richard Heath & Co. provides tax, accounting, auditing and review services.

Heath is licensed for practice in both North Carolina and South Carolina. His focus is in small businesses and their owner’s, particularly those in retail and wholesale distribution industries.

The Affordable Care Act is chief among common questions this year, Fania said, particularly about the penalties imposed for noncompliance.

Fania said accounting services don’t begin and end with tax season and Richard Heath & Co. can help businesses with financial solutions year-round. In general, the company focuses on small businesses, she said and can help make sure the bookkeeping is in order. Fania said the firm also offers financial statements for businesses on a monthly basis as well as payroll processing.

Located at 1971 Glenns Bay Rd., the office is convenient for those on the South Strand. For more about Richard Heath & Co. or to see other accountants, visit

by Amanda Blomquist, executive membership coordinator, and Brad Dickerson, media communications manager, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce/Convention and Visitors Bureau

February 9, 2015 at 5:03 pm Leave a comment

Member Spotlight: ESA Fitness

Terrance Butler has seen his business really kick in to high gear during these first few days of 2015.

That shouldn’t be too surprising, as Butler is a personal trainer and the owner of Enhanced Speed and Agility (ESA) Fitness in the Socastee community.

Since the No. 1 resolution each new year is to shed a few unwanted pounds, gyms across the country are filled to capacity right after those Jan. 1 doldrums pass and the chilly winter air make spending time on a treadmill more appealing.

Inevitably, however, many break that resolution after a few weeks, and there are fewer crowds at the gym. Butler and his business certainly are not immune to this.ESA_Logo

“I don’t want your money if you don’t want to be here,” Butler said.

He looks at physical fitness as a better type of investment. Instead of investing in large doctor bills, Butler said, one should invest in their health to decrease the risk of serious illness.

Helping adults lose weight and tone muscles isn’t Butler’s only area of expertise. He also works with a lot of local student athletes.

A former member of the Canadian Football League’s Montreal Alouettes, Butler also was invited to the Elite Pro Football Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts.

When his pursuit of an NFL career ended, Butler realized he wanted to help train others who were interested in the same pursuit.

His hands-on training extends beyond the gym and the field; Butler said he has also taken athletes on college recruitment trips and to NFL combines.

The reward is when his clients get selected by that elite university or professional team. Recently, Coastal Carolina grad and ESA client Lorenzo Taliaferro signed a contract with the Baltimore Ravens.

“It’s a lot of satisfaction,” Butler said.

So, whether you’re resolving to drop a few pounds and improve your overall health, or have dreams of NFL glory, Butler and ESA Fitness are ready to help you achieve your goals.

To learn more, go to

by Brad Dickerson, media communications manager, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce/Convention and Visitors Bureau

January 12, 2015 at 6:28 pm Leave a comment

Member Spotlight: Simply Savvy Boutique

If you still haven’t found a gift for the special women in your life, you may want to head to Simply Savvy Boutique in Carolina Forest.SimplySavvy1

There’s no shortage of unique at Simply Savvy Boutique. The clothing and accessory retail store opened in the Food Lion Shopping Center at 4036 River Oaks Dr., Unit 6 in August.

She operates the store with the help of two of her daughters, who both influence the clothing selections. That means there are options to suit most women from mid-to late teens to those in their 50s.

She said she looks for unique, high-quality pieces from vendors she’s learned to trust.

“First and foremost we want items that are different,” Squires said. “We don’t want to have the same thing that everybody else has.”

Prices are reasonable for a boutique though more expensive than other retail clothing stores.

“We try and make our prices more reasonable,” Squires said. “If a teenager is coming in I want them to be able to afford to buy something.”

SimplySavvy2Most items come in sizes small, medium or large. Occasionally items come in extra-large.

The accessory counter alone is worth a trip to the store with affordable fashion rings, bracelets and necklaces. One of the most popular items is leather wrap scripture bracelets.

Sales recently expanded online. Visit Simply Savvy Boutique’s Facebook page at for details.

by Amanda Blomquist, executive membership coordinator, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce

December 22, 2014 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

Myrtle Beach Area CVB Receives Accreditation  

The Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) has awarded the Myrtle Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau with a four-year renewal of its Destination Marketing Accreditation Program.

This prestigious honor recognizes CVB destination marketing organizations who meet a high level of quality and performance standards within the industry.

“The entire Myrtle Beach Area CVB staff is exemplary, and their hard work and dedication has led to this wonderful distinction,” said Brad Dean, president and CEO of the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce/CVB. “This application process is very intensive, and requires a lot of attention to detail. We couldn’t have gotten to this point without the contributions of not only our staff, but our board of directors, committees and councils. The Myrtle Beach area is a world-class vacation destination, and our goal remains to find new and cutting-edge ways to market it to first-time visitors.”

DMAI represents approximately 1,350 members from more than 600 destination marketing organizations throughout 30 countries. Of those 600 DMOs belonging to DMAI, only 180 are accredited.

For more information, go to

December 19, 2014 at 2:30 pm Leave a comment

Member Spotlight: Coastal Youth Ballet Theatre

CoastalYouthLiza Mata has a simple message she instills in the members of the Coastal Youth Ballet Theatre and Dance Centre – they can do anything.

“If they love it, it can happen,” said Mata, the theatre’s artistic director. “Nothing is impossible.”

The theatre started in 2005 and currently has 30 company members, who range in age from 8 to 19 years old. Their daily classes include a mix of ballet and contemporary dance.

For those looking to make dance a career, the Coastal Youth Ballet offers its members the opportunity to receive scholarships. Mata said some of her previous members received full scholarships to such prestigious schools as New York University and Juilliard.

With the holiday season in full swing, the Coastal Youth Ballet is looking ahead to its yuletide tradition of performing “The Nutcracker,” through a partnership with The Palace Theatre.

The showtimes are: 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Dec. 15; 10 a.m. on Dec. 16; 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Dec. 21; and 7 p.m. on Dec. 22.

It promises to once again be a magical experience for both the audience and the Coastal Youth Ballet members.

Get your tickets today.

by Brad Dickerson, media communications manager, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce/Convention and Visitors Bureau

December 16, 2014 at 4:00 pm Leave a comment

Welcome to Teal Town USA!

The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers are heading into playoff action this weekend, and the Myrtle Beach area is encouraged to turn the region into “Teal Town.”

CCU will play Richmond in second-round action at Brooks Stadium in Conway beginning at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 6.

The community can get in on the football excitement by decorating their homes and businesses with CCU colors on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 5 and Dec. 6. It doesn’t end there; make sure and dress in teal yourselves.

Then, participants are asked to take a picture and submit them to CCU’s social media channels. Fans should use #TealNation when making their submissions.

Once all photos are in, the best business and best individual decorations will be chosen. The winning individual will receive a $500 Shop Our Members gift package from Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, while the winning business will have a meal catered to them at a later date.

The Chanticleers finished the regular season with an 11-1 record, and received a first-round bye in the FCS playoffs. They are the seventh overall seed.

Go Chants! C-I-N-O!

December 4, 2014 at 3:11 pm Leave a comment

Myrtle Beach Area Chamber Maintains Five-Star Accreditation

5star_colorMyrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce has repeated its five-star accreditation from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, placing it among the top 2 percent of more than 7,000 chambers.

The accreditation is based on sound policies, effective organizational procedures and positive impact on the community. The chamber earned a perfect score in the facilities section and was commended for its comprehensive board of directors orientation handbook, establishing itself as an advocate for the business community through a variety of practices, including hosting fundraisers in support of business-friendly candidates, and for its efforts to provide a no-cost online forum for members to post job openings and provide links to continuing educational opportunities.

Of the 7,077 chambers of commerce in the United States, 213 of them are accredited. Out of that number, 89 are five-star chambers.

The chamber earned its first five-star rating in 2010 and will keep its current designation until 2019.

Diana Greene, executive vice president of MBACC membership programs & services, headed the review process.

“To achieve this five-star rating, staff once again performed an intensive self-assessment of our operations in nine sections that covered everything from governance and governmental affairs to program development and benchmarking. The process provided an opportunity to review what has been accomplished, but, more importantly to chart the path forward,” Greene explained. “The accreditation process combined into one document all of the outstanding achievements and contributions of board members, volunteers and staff who make the chamber a five-star organization. We should all be extraordinarily proud of this milestone achievement. It was a true team effort.”

Brad Dean, president and CEO, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, praised the chamber and staff for being recognized with the top rating of five-star accreditation. “I am impressed every day with the impact this chamber has on the community and our members,” Dean said. “There is a lot of hard work being done to move this community forward and to have the distinction of being one of the top chambers in the country adds to our credibility and effectiveness.”

U.S. Chamber accreditation is the only national program recognizing chambers for their effective organizational procedures and community involvement. Accreditation allows chambers to renew, improve and promote sound business practices, policies and procedures. Local chambers are rated accredited, three-stars, four-stars or five-stars. The final determination is made by the Accrediting Board, a committee of U.S. Chamber board members and chamber executives from across the country.


November 28, 2014 at 8:12 pm Leave a comment

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