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Apr. 9, 2003
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Wednesday, April 9, 2003

Chamber of commerce hopes to win back AK Steel



By Mike Boyer
The Cincinnati Enquirer

The president of the Mid-Miami Valley Chamber of Commerce hopes to get AK Steel back in the business organization.

The Middletown steel maker notified the chamber Thursday that it was withdrawing because "it was not meeting our needs," Alan McCoy, AK Steel spokesman, said.

Chamber President David Daugherty said AK Steel, one of Middletown's largest employers, was the largest member of the chamber.

He said the chamber, which represents 600 businesses in Middletown, Monroe and Trenton, hoped to convince AK Steel to rejoin.

The company's withdrawal won't cause a financial hardship, but the chamber was "re-evaluating everything," he said.

The company's move came the same day that Cincinnati lawyer Stan Chesley spoke at a chamber luncheon about how "smoking gun" documents can affect lawsuits against corporations.

McCoy declined to comment on whether Chesley's speech played a role in the company's decision.

In 1996, Chesley represented the families of two workers killed in an explosion at the Middletown Works. The company and the families eventually reached a confidential settlement.

Chesley said he was "flabbergasted" by reports that his speech, which didn't mention AK Steel, might have played a role in the company's withdrawal.

"I think it's petty and childish" if true, he said.

A couple of years ago, the company withdrew from the Washington, D.C.-based American Iron and Steel Institute after disagreeing with some of its policies.

E-mail mailto:mboyer@enquirer.com



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Apr. 9, 2003
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