Submitted by Orrville Chamber on Mon, 02/18/2019 - 9:00am

The cold and snow did not deter more than 140 Chamber members and guests from attending the 4th annual Orrville Area State of the Chamber luncheon, February 1 at The Pines Golf Club and Event Center.

Red Circle Sponsor for the event was The Commercial and Savings Bank.  Black Circle Sponsors included Redwood Apartments and The Pines Golf Club and Event Center. 

In opening remarks, Lori Reinbolt, Chamber president & CEO, recognized Vince Tricomi, 2019 Chairman of the Board, for his leadership.  Tricomi will serve a second term as chairman in 2019.   

Chairman Tricomi began his remarks with a quick recap of how the Chamber’s Vision 2025 developed and explained that a paradigm shift from what the Chamber does to what the Chamber will be to its members in the future was the foundation for becoming a Chamber of the future.

“The state of the Orrville Area Chamber of Commerce is gaining traction toward realizing Vision 2025,” announced Tricomi.  “This is the year that the hard work of our board begins to pay off.”

Chamber membership currently totals 310 which is a 15% growth in 5 years.  A significant achievement at a time when the trend of chambers nationally is on the decline.

Further validating that the Orrville Area Chamber is on the right track is a 95% membership retention rate from 2017 to 2018.  

The Chamber welcomed 43 new members in 2018.  Those in attendance included: Jazz By Design, McElroy Packaging, Schar Heating and Cooling and Redwood Apartments.

The Chamber’s three vision areas are Member Engagement, Workforce Sustainability, and Community Sustainability.

Traci Carmony, second vice chair, shared details about innovative member engagement experiences that will be introduced in the coming weeks.  The Chamber plans to roll out new online tools and a redesigned website. 

Carmony also presented a bold new Chamber logo and the organizational tagline ‘Connecting Communities, Expanding Possibilities.’

Reinbolt discussed the Chamber’s vision for workforce sustainability.  The Chamber’s Career Readiness committee will partner with Heartland Education Community in 2019 to pilot the implementation of the Ohio Means Jobs Readiness Seal in the Orrville Schools.  

“The implementation process is complex and requires the cooperation of educators, business leaders and community partners,” stated Reinbolt.  “It is our hope that once implemented, we can share the framework with other school districts as a model.”

A focus on entrepreneurism as an emerging trend was also highlighted.  The Chamber will present a 12 week series in partnership with Akron SCORE for business owners looking to grow.  The series combines educational content with business coaching is scheduled to begin in March.

The vision for community sustainability was presented by the Chamber’s first vice chair, Dave Hershey.  Hershey revealed details of the chamber’s OrrVision Taskforce, a group that has been ‘dreaming for community’ for the past three years.  

“The Chamber’s mission is to identify economic development opportunities,” stated Hershey.  “We have done this and validated it with a commercial feasibility study and designation as an Opportunity Zone.  Now it’s time to pass it on.”

In 2019, the Chamber will transition the work of the OrrVision Taskforce to the Orrville Area Development Foundation (OADF).  The OADF Board of Directors will refocus the organization as the driver for commercial development in Orrville. 

Tricomi concluded by introducing the Community Impact Award.

“This is a new award to recognize a business or organization that made an outstanding contribution to the community in the past year,” stated Tricomi.  “Finalists will be recognized at the Annual Dinner on March 28 and the winner will be announced at the event.”

The 103rd Annual Chamber Dinner and Awards, A Celebration of Community, will be held March 28 at The University of Akron Wayne College.  Reservations can be made online…
or by calling the Chamber office at 330-682-8881 ext 51.

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