January 22, 2018 will usher in a new beginning at the Tuskegee Area Chamber of Commerce.

This is the first meeting of the year for the Chamber and the top item on the agenda is the swearing-in of officers. Loretta Alexander will take the reins as Chamber President, and for the next two years she will work with Roland Vaughan, Bobby Davis and Fred Flowers on policy issues to undergird the Chamber and strategic planning to chart the organization’s future.

They have already been productively busy, evidenced by the standing committees they have established with clearly defined missions. In alphabetical order, those committees and their functions are briefly explained here.

The goal of the Community Development & Housing committee is to engage the Chamber in projects that improve the physical landscape of Tuskegee and Macon County with special emphasis on dilapidated buildings and to work in partnership with other organizations that have a similar mission.

The Community & University Engagement committee was formed to foster a healthy relationship between Tuskegee University and the local business community.

The Government Relations committee is the connection to local, state and national governmental entities and the Chamber’s internal resource concerning politics and legislation.

The Image & Communications committee will help with branding and marketing. The Membership committee is charged with recruiting and retaining members. The Special Projects committee develops and implements events and assists other committees with their programs and activities.

The Tourism & Business Development committee will serve as the in-house leader concerning tourism issues and projects while also addressing business opportunities and challenges.

The chairpersons of these committees will be introduced at the January 22nd meeting and members will be encouraged to join the committee that resonates most with them.

Joining a committee is actually step 2. Joining the Chamber is step 1. We ask that you take a moment in January to become a Chamber member, either by rejoining or coming on board for the first time.

Please attend the Chamber meeting on January 22, 2018 beginning at 6:30 p.m., Henderson Hall, Tuskegee University campus. This is a new beginning for the Chamber and a turning point for BUSINESS MATTERS.

Karin Hopkins is executive director of the Tuskegee Area Chamber of Commerce and also co- founder of ECHOboom, a digital media platform. Contact her at ourchamberworks@gmail.com.

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