Chats With Chambers

Chats With Chambers

Chats With Chambers brings the power and ideas of chambers from across the country to you! Each episode features a new Chamber Executive as they share their wins and tips in the areas of recruitment, fundraising, retention of members and more. Check out these quick 15 minute episodes and find new strategies to make your Chamber even more successful.


November 8, 2022 12 min

Carbondale has more than 340 business that they provide support and education for. They are between Glenwood Springs and Aspen, CO. They are at the base of Mt. Sopris, 12, 953 feet! They have a lot of toursim and hospitality as well as construction and professional services.  The Chamber is also combined with Carbondale Tourism.

Love Local is a program the kicked off in 2020. It reminds businesses and people in the area to shop loca...

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Ste. Genevieve is a small community (just shy of 5,000 people) on the Mississippi River. Of the 5 houses in the US built on stilts, 3 are in Ste. Genevieve. They are historical and really embrace their roots. The Chamber focuses more on businesses now that their is a tourism department that’s taken that on. It is a heavy mining community. They are home to the largest cement plant in the US. They also have smaller manufacturing comp...

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Bismarck – Mandan, North Dakota is a metro area of about 130,000 people. They have a diverse economy and are the state capital. Their economy includes 3 colleges, energy production, 3 hospitals, and helps keep the area growing and thriving.

The chamber merged back in 2019 with their economic development group. That has been their greatest success. It has allowed them to bring more value to the area. Their events, membership, revenue...

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Glasgow is a smaller community and economic hub in NE Montana. They are branded as the “middle of nowhere” because they are 4.5 hours in any direction from any metropolitan area of more than 75,000 people. The chamber was established in 1917! They are very event driven.  Agriculture and tourism are the primary industries. The ag industry is thriving because they are coming out of a drought.

They run a walleye tournament that has bee...

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Fremont is responsible for all the Costco chickens west of the Mississippi! It’s about 25,000 situated between Lincoln and Omaha. They have a diverse business economy. Traveling nurses, tech business is growing, plus a small university helps create that diversity.

In 2019, there was a big flood in Fremont and there was no way for anyone to get in or out. The community really pulled together and supported each other. That feeling als...

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Beaverhead is in the SW corner of MT and is the largest county in MT. It’s harder to get to so building and and growing is more challenging. However, they have a lot of space and area to grow. Their county is around 10,000 in population. They are now replacing their wooden water mane systems from the 1800s! They also supply a lot of talc to the country. Beaverhead National Forest takes up a lot of their county.

The Beaverhead Treasu...

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Marion has a population of around 42,000. They are a Mainstreet Iowa community and the chamber has been around since 1938, and Jill has been with them for 15 years!

The community development work has been the biggest success. They received a grant called Iowa Great Places. When they first applied they were told to do a visioning process with their community and did that. Over 6 months they did brainstorming sessions and conversation...

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Hayward is in the North West corner of Wisconsin. They consider themselves to be in the North Woods area. Tourism is a big part of their economy. Their businesses are very diverse. The full-time population is 2,500 but because they are tourism driven they have many more services than you’d normally see in a town that size. They have a great main street that has been voted top 10 main streets in the country.

Hayward is the home of th...

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Jacksonville is a small town in Southern Oregon, around 3,000 in population. They are the Heart of Southern Oregon Wine Country! In the 1860s it was one of the towns that was going to have the railroad but that changed so got to keep their historic feel and look. The area is made up of all small businesses, there aren’t chain stores. They want to preserve it and keep it small and local.

The support they give their business is someth...

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Havre is in North Central MT. It is a tight knit community of about 9,500 people. New business is coming in and providing more diversity in food, retail and more! They have an underground tour from when their city had a big fire and needed to build underground.  They’re also on the dinosaur trail so you can check out some artifacts. There is even a paleontologist in town who’s doing research.

They just ran their second annual Bear P...

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Astoria is located at the estuary of the Columbia River in north west Oregon. It is a small community with a lot of small businesses. They have a lot of members and are one of the largest chambers in the state per capita. Several movies have been filmed here like the Goonies, Kindergarten Cop, Free Willy, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

The membership base is a big win for them. They are all there to support each other when they n...

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Helena is the state capital in MT so it is a government based town. It is the fastest growing city in MT. They are working on the balance of the influx of new people and still maintaining the Montana lifestyle. They have a big entrepreneurship mindset so lots of people open businesses. They are also very tourism based.

They are really proud of their WINS program which is their workforce development program. It was founded in 2017 to...

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Coffeyville is a small town in Northeast Kansas most known for being the site where the Dalton Gang was taken down. They are a staff of three which includes a tourism director. They are working hard to build that culture that encompasses their values.

COVID forced the Chamber to have to revisit how they carried on. Since they have such a long history they had to really take stock in what was working and where they were going. They h...

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Belgrade, MT is a small community that is experiencing large growth! They are in SW MT, 10 miles away from Bozeman.

Workforce issues are real – especially since most people moving to the area are bringing their jobs with them.

When a local elementary school had to shut down because they didn’t have any substitute teachers, it meant that local businesses also had to close because their staff needed to be home with their kids. Kristi t...

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Fort Collins is about an hour north of Denver and is the home of Colorado State University. They also have a high-tech industry as well as a thriving small business climate and great downtown presence.

The Fort Collins chamber partnered with other area chambers as well as government agencies and business leaders to build infrastructure that would impact their ability to grow. They worked on improving the I-25 corridor to allow for e...

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Wamego is a small community in NE Kansas and has a strong Chamber working in conjunction with other area organizations like the CVB. Wamgeo is the fastest growing community in Kansas and has a new major business bringing 500 jobs to the area. Wamego is known as the hub of the Wizard of Oz. They are home to the Oz museum.

Wamego is super proud of their festivals and events. They bring in up to 50,000 plus people for some of their eve...

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Being in the Minnetonka area, there is a lot of blending of communities. The boundaries aren't as defined which allows for so much more networking between organizations and growth for the chamber. It has a tourist and small town feel with lots of small businesses.

Building energy into the community for the chamber is reinvigorating. Having conversations with business owners and listening to what they have to say can help you wit...

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Harbor Springs is located off Lake Michigan and is the deepest harbor in all of the Great Lakes. They are a tourist area, with year round residents and a summer population with families that have been coming for generations. All the businesses in the area are local, there are no chain stores. 

Harbor Springs survived COVID. The Chamber team did an online auction and raised $20,000 and reinvested that back into the local businesses t...

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Networking groups within the chamber was lacking when Quinn took over. He didn’t feel like they were really taking advantage of the opportunity to support the community. He worked hard to increase the cadence of these networking communities and help make a bigger impact.

Utilizing the energy of newer members can help in building networking groups in the chamber and helping them grow. It also takes some of the pressure off of the Cha...

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Questions We Asked This Episode: 

  • What is the Loomis Basin Area Chamber all about? [1:19]
  • What are you most proud of? [5:49]
  • What are challenges you face? [10:20]
  • What is your tip and trick to pass on to other chambers? [12:15]
  • How can you learn more about Loomis Basin Chamber? [18:28]
  • Full transcript & more info:

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