CANTON, OH (January 5, 2009) - The Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce will welcome William Robert "Tim" Timken, Jr. back to Ohio after his three years as U.S. Ambassador to Germany at the 95th annual dinner, held Wednesday, Feb. 18 at the Canton Memorial Civic Center. As keynote speaker, Ambassador Timken will bring his global perspective and experiences to light for our business community.


"Ambassador Timken's local and regional economic development support was greatly valued and appreciated during his tenure at The Timken Company. Now at the conclusion of his ambassador-ship in Germany, his story becomes all the more compelling for our membership. Ambassador Timken will offer a point of view unlike any other," said Dennis P. Saunier, president & CEO of the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce.


Mr. Timken is married to Sue Timken, recent recipient of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Bundesverdienstkreuz, the highest honor that can be bestowed on individuals for their contribution to the German nation, in appreciation of her social and philanthropic work within Germany. After more than three years in Germany, Ambassador Timken and his wife returned to the U.S. in December 2008 and will make their permanent home once again in Canton.


The 95th Chamber annual dinner will also include a special recognition of retiring U.S. Congressman Ralph Regula. Congressman Regula has served Stark County exceptionally well in his 36 years as Representative for Ohio's 16th Congressional District. His dedication to our community is demonstrated by his instrumental involvement in critical local and regional initiatives, including the U.S. Route 30 expansion, the creation of two important higher learning institutions, Stark State College and Northeast Ohio Universities College of Medicine (NEOUCOM), the preservation of the Ohio & Erie Canal, resulting in the creation of the Ohio & Erie National Heritage Canalway, federal funding of the Rolls Royce Fuel Cell Center, assistance for Akron-Canton Airport and most recently, his efforts have resulted in the upcoming construction of Canton's new Federal Center, set to be completed in 2010. Join us as we salute Congressman Regula for his vast accomplishments on behalf of our community.


The gavel will be passed from outgoing board chairman, Tim Maloney, to the 2009 board chairman, Ronald D. Becker. The Chamber will recognize and thank the outgoing board members and usher in new members for an exceptional 95th year.


The 95th annual dinner will begin with a 5:30 p.m. social hour and dinner will be served at 7 p.m. Registrations for the annual dinner can be made online at The cost is $85 for Chamber members; $95 for non-members. Tables of eight are available for purchase for discounted member price of $640, or a non-member price of $760. All payments must be received in advance and reservations must be received by Feb. 4.


About Keynote Speaker Ambassador Timken

Nominated by President Bush, W. R. Timken, Jr. served as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Federal Republic of Germany from August 2005 to December of 2008. Ambassador Timken was previously the non-executive Chairman of the Timken Company. Prior to that, he was Chairman of the Board of Directors until year-end 2003. During his 43-year tenure with the company, Ambassador Timken served in many positions including president, CEO and as chairman for the last 30 years. The Timken Company is a worldwide NYSE, Fortune 500 Company with operations in more than 20 countries.


Ambassador Timken, a native of Canton, Ohio, received a Bachelor of Arts from Stanford University in 1960 and a Masters in Business Administration from the Harvard Business School in 1962. His business experience includes service on the boards of directors of numerous public companies. He has also chaired the National Association of Manufacturers, The Manufacturing Institute and the Ohio Business Roundtable. He has served on the Advisory Council of the Stanford University School of Business and was a member of the U.S.-Japan Business Council for 20 years. In 2003, he received a presidential appointment to serve as Chairman of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation.


Ambassador Timken has received many honors and awards. He is a Chevalier in the French Legion of Honor and an honorary citizen of Colmar, France. He has received the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship, the Adam Smith Award and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. He has been named Ohio Business Statesman of the Year and has received the Ohio Governors Award.