The Dorchester Chamber of Commerce presented the 2022 C. Robert “Bob” Spedden Service Award to Greg Whitten at the organization’s annual meeting March 16.
Spedden was a well-known and respected leader in the community. He demonstrated a real passion for the revitalization of the county and Cambridge. He served for several years on the Board of Directors of the Dorchester Chamber of Commerce and was the president in 1980-1981. He also served on the Cambridge Yacht Club Board of Governors, First National Bank Advisory Board, Dorchester Board of Realtors as president, and director for the Maryland Association of Realtors.
Spedden founded the Committee of 100 that spawned revitalization efforts including the Dorchester County Visitors Center, the adjacent children's playground, Sailwinds Park, Governor's Hall, Richardson Maritime Museum, Choptank River Lighthouse, Downtown Harriett Tubman Museum, and the Dorchester Skipjack Committee - Nathan of Dorchester. He also served as the first president of Sailwinds Park Incorporated. His vision for economic development of Dorchester County also included the re-development of the former Eastern Shore State Hospital property into today's Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa & Marina.
The objective of the award is to recognize those individuals that share a similar passion to Bob’s and are working to advance the economic wellbeing of our community. Whitten is the fourth recipient of the prestigious award. Prior recipients include Frank Narr, Gerry Boyle and Philip Feldman.
Whitten grew up in and spent his entire career in Dorchester County. His love and respect for the community is obvious to anyone that spends any amount of time with him. He was in the first class to graduate from the new Cambridge/South Dorchester High School in 1977. He then went to Salisbury University and graduated with a bachelor’s in finance and marketing in 1981. On Feb. 14, 1983, he began his career with Nationwide Insurance by starting a scratch agency, which saw much success under his leadership. He was the 28th agent to be inducted into the Nationwide Hall of Fame in 2007 and was the second youngest to do so. He was named to the Nationwide All Star Team 14 out of 15 years.
He was a founding member of the First Choice Agency Alliance which is the third largest insurance aggregator in the country. He is also a partner in Safehouse, a local security company. He now partners in Whitten Retirement Solutions with his son, Blake Whitten.
While his success in business should have been enough to occupy all his time, he was, and still is, very engaged in the community.
Here are some of the roles he has held:
Sharon Spedden, Chamber Board chairman in 2021 and daughter of Bob Spedden, said, “Greg’s engagement in his many roles was not for recognition or personal gain but simply to make the community a better place to live. That is the embodiment of the Bob Spedden Service Award. I know my dad would be very pleased with Greg receiving this recognition.”
Over 300 business and community leaders registered to attend the sold-out event held at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Resort and Spa.
For more information about the Dorchester Chamber of Commerce or the C. Robert “Bob” Spedden Service Award, visit dorchesterchamber.org.