Santa Fe New Mexican - CONNECT - 2021-03-28





The mission of the Santa Fe Chamber of Commerce is “to grow the local economy and serve as the voice of business.” The Chamber is an important influence in the growth and prosperity of the Santa Fe community. Twenty-one board members, five committees and dozens of valuable volunteers assist and advise Chamber staff and help create programs that support the mission of the organization. The Chamber is a convener in the community, a catalyst for positive change and a champion of success and prosperity. At its annual planning session in May of each year, the Chamber board of directors identifies priorities that support the Chamber’s mission and create clear collaborations with other organizations. Chief among these priorities are job creation, increasing the supply of income-appropriate housing, workforce development and business advocacy. Chamber programs and activities can be divided into five core competencies: LOBBYING AS THE VOICE OF BUSINESS • Supporting the work of Los Alamos National Laboratory and the resulting regional economic development • Cofounding the Santa Fe Housing Action Coalition, a broad-based community coalition dedicated to expanding the accessibility and affordability of quality housing options in Santa Fe. The coalition addresses the many issues currently impeding the accessibility of housing for all who want to live and work in Santa Fe by organizing, convening, educating and mobilizing stakeholders to advocate for more community-responsive housing and land-use policy. • Supporting additional flights, improvements and funding at the Santa Fe Airport through the Fly Santa Fe campaign • Lobbying for consistent local and state tourism marketing funding • Hosting conversations with municipal candidates, merchant meetings, legislative previews and other events to inform the electorate about candidates and legislative issues • Hosting monthly virtual breakfasts, which draw dozens of business and community leaders • Supporting rational local regulation of the growing shortterm rental industry • Lobbying to reduce unnecessary rules and regulations and to support commonsense business licensing • Identifying economically viable best uses for the Santa Fe University of Art and Design property and surrounding properties • Hosting a biweekly virtual Chamber Chat, featuring a range of topics to keep businesses informed, engaged and connected • Hosting the Virtual Roundhouse series to provide oneon-one legislator office hours with constituents, sharing updates from cabinet secretaries and hosting the social calendar of the legislative session to bring access and information to citizens of the state in a free, safe manner GROWING THE LOCAL ECONOMY • Working with local merchant groups to address issues and to advocate for an improved business environment • Hosting foreign trade and other industry groups that have an interest in connecting with and investing in Santa Fe • Connecting businesses with government agencies, resources, partners and potential collaborators • Celebrating new local businesses through ribbon-cuttings and other ceremonies • Lobbying for the New Mexico film industry and connecting local businesses with film and other media opportunities • Participating in the Downtown Alive Task Force with the tourism department and the Santa Fe mayor on tourism-focused issues • Working to improve broadband access, reduce regulations, create regional collaborations and strengthen relations with local and state government • Creating a Santa Fe e-commerce site with the city tourism department to provide a platform for businesses to sell products online PROMOTING A PROSPEROUS COMMUNITY • Hosting the sold-out fifth annual Women’s Leadership Luncheon, with more than 300 attendees and a panel of successful women leaders from the local community • Lobbying for better public transportation • Collaborating with administrators and elected officials through numerous programs to improve Santa Fe Public Schools • Supporting the Senior Lifestyle Expo, which drew hundreds of exhibitors and shoppers to Santa Fe Place Mall • Partnering with business, community and nonprofit groups to create a more diverse, prosperous and healthy city economy CREATING CONNECTION OPPORTUNITIES • Hosting regular Chamber events that draw more than 4,000 attendees each year • Offering membership benefits and member-to-member discounts • Hosting monthly virtual speed networking events to connect community members in a fast-paced, one-on-one setting ORGANIZATIONAL IMPROVEMENTS • Increasing community sponsorships for Chamber programs and events • Creating the Member of the Month program • Sending thousands of referrals, links, page views and online mentions to support member businesses


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