It's not easy running a business in today's economic climate. The Turlock Chamber of Commerce knows this and strives to help businesses of every size not only keep their doors open through this slow economic recovery, but to also thrive. In 2013, the Turlock Chamber was recognized as one of the top 10 Chambers in the state and received, for the fifth year in a row, the Cal Chamber President's Award.
"We are the connection to the city, we're the information center, and we offer guidance," said Chamber CEO and President Sharon Silva.
Silva recently shared the Chamber's long list of accomplishments and initiatives from 2013, as well as the organization's goals for 2014, at the annual Membership Breakfast event.
"2013 was a very exciting year for the Turlock Chamber of Commerce," said Silva. "The Turlock Chamber has been fortunate to have outstanding leadership with the board and chairs over the past years, and this year was no exception. 2013 Chairman Dr. Mike Romeo was always there providing support and guidance to the Chamber’s staff. It is an honor to work with a Board of Directors who have vision and commitment for economic development and to the businesses of Turlock."
To further the Chamber's goal of fostering economic development in the area, Silva is a member of a variety of collaborative groups. She chairs the City of Turlock's Mayor's Economic Task Force, is a member of the Development Collaborative Committee, which works with city staff on streamlining the process of doing business in Turlock, President Dr. Joseph Sheley’s Advisory Committee for California State University, Stanislaus and the Business Advisory Board for the School of Business.
Along with the Chamber's Political Action Committee, legislative education is a key resource the organization offers to its members, said Silva.
"Everything that businesses do has a legislative outcome, whether it's workman's comp, salaries or taxes, starting at the local level. It's important that people here have a voice in the city council and state legislature," said Silva.
"It's important to have people who have the privilege of representing us to know how they vote affects business and its economic impact. In the last seven years, the Chamber has had a political action committee so that people in our community are informed on what is happening, whether with water, transportation, or LAFCO (Local Agency Formation Commissions)."
The Chamber will continue its focus on political action in 2014, said Silva, along with economic development, continuing education and membership development.
"I look forward to working with the 2014 Board of Directors and Board Chair Andrew Wigglesworth, CEO of MedicAlert. It is a privilege to work with a team who wants to insure that the Chamber of Commerce becomes better at providing services to assist Turlock businesses and to work with our partners," said Silva.