120 members, friends and special invited guests of AMCHAM gathered together this past Monday at noon at the Double Tree Hilton in Domeldange for our 2022 AMCHAM Christmas lunch! Starting with a penthouse cocktail reception on the top floor. We have been very happy to welcome all of our head table attendees: US Ambassador Tom Barrett and his wife, the commanding General of the Luxembourg Army, Steve Thull accompanied by Luxembourg Army Colonel, Christian Simon Romanian Ambassador, Livia Rusu, Czech Ambassador, Vladimir Bartl, the new Japanese Ambassador, Tadahiro Matsubara , and Colonel and Mrs Leslie Hauck , the Wing Commander of the 52nd Fighter Wing at Spangdahlem Air Base Germany. Our second head table featured our EXCO member Gareth Reynolds accompanied by Bill Erpelding, the Head of the Luxembourg private pilot association and Jena Reis the Director of EMEA Governmental affairs at Guardian industries and several of the private pilots who flew aircraft during our very successful Summer fly In and tour of Spangdahlem Air Base over the Summer, Wing Sergeant Major, Chief Master Sargent Toby Roach, Major Bryan J Beals and his wife and the two civilian community relations managers from the Air Base, Claudia Mueller & Bernard Schaeffer.
Unsurprisingly, the networking cocktail was hard to stop for all of the good conversations (and also because we had arranged the fun photo booth for group photos!). But eventually we all moved down to the banquet hall for a welcoming speech and holiday greetings by Ambassador Barrett followed by a great three course lunch with very good wine.
After eating and before dessert and coffee, Paul Schonenberg and Ambassador Barrett took the occasion to laud and honor the men and women of the 52nd fighter Wing for their service in support of NATO. As a gesture of appreciation AMCHAM donated to the airbase a stock of 400 AMCHAM member benefit shopping cards for distribution among key high performing staff at the military base to help these deserving men and women benefit from the arranged discounts when they come and shop in Luxembourg.
With all of the military guests gathered together in the front of the room, Mr. Schonenberg jointly with Ambassador Barrett and his wife then made a special surprise announcement honoring the Wing personnel by announcing their selection as the recipients of the 2022 AMCHAM spirit of Freedom Award presented in the form of a Swarovski Crystal Statue, which had sat the entire time of the dinner in the middle of the heads table at the lunch. Colonel Hauck and his wife Angela, along with their team were very surprised and very pleased to be so honored and promised to gratefully share this honor with their fellow colleagues and their families at the air base and with their higher headquarters.
This event was a great way to close out the AMCHAM year of activities on a high note with Paul Schonenberg closing the lunch by offering his most sincere thanks and best wishes for the holiday season.
Very special thanks to our main sponsor of the event: Stefan Chorus of Streff Luxembourg!!