Counting Everyone in Salina
Census workers are gearing up to take a headcount of America, and an accurate count has important implications for local communities. Census data is used in a wide range of state and federal funding formulas and to determine elected representation. Population is also a key driver for many corporate location decisions.
Because so much is riding on getting a full count, many chambers have gotten involved in promoting the census. In Ada, OK the local chamber has worked to ensure that their community has enough blank census forms. Lake Zurich, IL has seen a higher than average return rate on mailed census forms thanks to a joint marketing effort between the chamber and the Rotary Club.
In Salina, KS, census completion efforts spearheaded by the chamber have received national attention. Chamber CEO Dennis Lauver was featured on a recent NPR story on the importance of getting an accurate census count. In the last census Salina came up a few people short of 50,000, an important benchmark for some automatic funding calculations and a threshold for many retailers and restaurants.
Click to hear more about Salina's efforts to get everyone counted - NPR: Salina, Kansas, Counts On Its Census Tally To Grow
400 Chambers in 90 days?
Maybe not quite that many, but . . .
A trip to the WACE meeting San Francisco. Adinner with chambers in Central GA. The Council of State Chambers wintermeeting. Two three-day sessions of theFord Regional Development Fellows. USChamber Committee of 100 meeting, NW Chamber Leaders Conference in Coeur d'Alene. World ChambersFederation board meeting. Throw in a dozen chambers stopping by our offices in Alexandria for awards judging and I may haveset my personal record for member contact in a quarter.
In most of those meetings, the inevitable question arises: "So how are things - out there?" And the simple answer? Chambers are figuring out how to do more work with 20% fewer resources.And at home? Yourplanned vacations have been shortened or postponed, in part because of your guilt over the workload you're imposing on your staffs.
My good friend Jay Chesshir at the Little Rock Chamber told me the other day: "Hey, it ain't easy, but chamber leaders are NOT Dilbert."
And that's one more reason that I am so glad that we are . . . in this together.
ACCE Members Visit the Dubai Chamber
On March 6-12, the Dubai Chamber generously hosted an ACCE Metro Cities Council delegation of 45 people from 22 states and one Canadian province. This group, headed by ACCE Chair Dave Adkisson (president and CEO of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce) and ACCE Metro Cities Council Chair Roy Williams (president and CEO of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce), visited many parts of Dubai, including the world's tallest building (the Burj Khalifa), the seven-star Burj Al Arab hotel, the Palm Jumeirah luxury development just off shore in the Persian Gulf, the world's largest man-made seaport, a $3 billion racecourse, the world's largest shopping mall, and even an indoor ski slope!
The Dubai Chamber also facilitated meetings with key business people throughout this metropolis of 1.8 million people that serves a trade area for close to 2 billion people. The ACCE group, moreover, was invited to the palace of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, where Dave Adkisson sat next to the legendary leader of Dubai and the delegation members were served colorful fruit drinks as they listened to interesting conversation and, in the background, heard peacocks rustling in the garden.
Check out more from ACCE's trip to Dubai:
- Adkisson leads chamber executive delegation in Dubai (PDF)
- UAE, US chambers exchange ideas
- Dubai Chamber brings Dubai business, US chamber leaders face to face
- Top US business delegation takes to Dubai (video)
- Dubai Chamber brings Dubai business, US chamber leaders face to face (video)
- US delegation are impressed with Dubai (video)
Corrections Reform Webinar
On February 17 ACCE and the Pew Center on the States hosted a webinar on the business case for corrections and sentencing reform. ACCE Chairman Dave Adkisson joined the Pew Center's Adam Gelb to discuss how states can spend more efficiently on the penal system and the role chambers can play in driving this agenda. Sarah Hubbard from the Detroit Regional Chamber moderated the discussion.