Army Corps Col. Kelly Speaking at Next Chamber Business Luncheon

provided to The Santiva Chronicle

Chamber president and CEO John Lai with Col. Andrew Kelly and members of the chamber Government Affairs Committee: Callie Johnson, Mark Blust, and Chris Davidson.

Col. Andrew Kelly, commander and district engineer of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, will appear as guest speaker at the Wednesday, Aug. 11, luncheon business meeting of the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce. The meeting will be held at the Pink Shell Beach Resort on Fort Myers Beach starting at 12 p.m., sponsored by Captains for Clean Water and Rapid Response Team LLC.

Col. Kelly assumed command of the Army Corps in August 2018 after serving as the chief of staff for the Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan in Kabul. Prior to that deployment, he attended the Eisenhower School of National Security and Resource Strategy in Washington, D.C., earning a master of science degree in national resource strategy. While in the capital region, he completed assignments in the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works) office and on the army staff in the Office of the Chief of Engineers.

Previous assignments include commanding the Walla Walla District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; Joint Engineer Trainer in the U.S. Joint Forces Command; operations and executive officer for the 92nd Engineer Battalion; and brigade combat team engineer in the third infantry division. As a captain he commanded the 74th Multi-Role Bridge Company, served as a project engineer in the New York district, and was the executive officer to the North Atlantic Division commander.

Kelly graduated from the United States Military Academy and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the corps of engineers in 1994. His military awards include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, and Defense Meritorious Service medals. He is also the recipient of the Army Engineer Association’s Bronze Order of the de Fleury Medal.

“We look forward to discourse from and with Col. Kelly regarding the evolution of the Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual, aka LOSOM,” said John Lai, chamber president and chief executive officer. “The corps recently made its preliminary selection of the LOSOM plan it wishes to operate by in the next decade. We on the chamber’s Government Affairs Committee agree that the current plan will require improvements to provide the protection we seek for local waters.”

The chamber business lunch is a monthly networking opportunity held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at member locations. The chamber strives to provide speakers to discuss relevant business topics for the membership.

Sanibel-Captiva chamber members will receive meeting invitations by email. Cost for luncheon attendance is $30 for chamber members only. Advanced registration is required to attend; walk-ins are not accepted. Register by 5 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 6, at or by calling 239-472-8255. Payment is due at time of registration.

The Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to promoting the prosperity of its members and preserving the quality of life of our community. With more than 460 active Chamber members from both islands and businesses from Lee and Collier counties, the Chamber plays a key role in facilitating communication and cooperation between business, residents, and government to enhance the economic health of the islands. The Francis P. Bailey, Jr., Chamber Visitor Center is located at the entrance to Sanibel Island and welcomes tens of thousands of visitors each year. VISIT FLORIDA named the visitor center one of 13 official Florida Certified Tourism Information Centers in the state. It is open 365 days a year and provides comprehensive information about things to do, places to visit, and where to stay, shop, and dine. The chamber website receives more than 1.3 million website visits per year.

For more information about the chamber, visit or contact Landen Drake, communications and marketing manager, at 239-472-8255 or

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