December 2015

In this Issue

If you have any comments about this enewsletter, or would like to recommend news items or reports for future issues, please contact Hannah Nequist at ACCE.

ACCE Adopts Organizational Commitment to Inclusion

After several months of work and much discussion, ACCE’s Board of Directors voted unanimously to adopt a diversity and inclusion commitment statement:

"For the betterment of the association, chamber leaders and the communities they serve, ACCE will champion access and equity of opportunity through intentional inclusion of all."

The statement, presented at the board’s October meeting in Alexandria, VA, was developed by the board’s Diversity & Inclusion working group, which is comprised of members of both ACCE’s board and the D&I Division. Additionally, the D&I working group identified three areas of impact for the association to begin addressing:

  • Ingrain inclusion principles, strategies and tactics into the culture and work of the entire association.
  • Articulate the compelling business case for chamber-led efforts to promote inclusion and diversity.
  • Coach, train and help to position chamber professionals from underrepresented groups to explore career advancement opportunities in the chamber industry.

These impact areas have also been approved by the ACCE board. Moving forward, the D&I working group will continue to work with staff to develop work plans and metrics around each of the impact area.

We Need Your Help! As the association embarks on this important work, we need to learn from others. If your organization already has a strategic work plan around inclusion, please share your experiences and insights. Send us a note at:

DOL Offers New Program on Disability Inclusion

Funded through the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), Concepts Communications is offering a new program to help small business associations develop disability inclusion initiatives. Getting Down to Business: A Pilot to Strengthen Small Business Through Disability will take selected participants through a year-long process with a technical assistance team to implement strategies to help their member businesses create more disability inclusive workplaces.

To apply, your organization must be:

  • A business membership association, and
  • Have a significant percentage of members that are small businesses
Click here to download the application. Applications are due Friday, December 11. For questions or more information, please visit the program website or contact Katherine DiGiovanni.


Troy Chamber CEO honored with Diversity Award
In September, Troy (MI) Chamber of Commerce CEO and President Ara Toupouzian was honored along with other individuals and businesses across the state with Corp! magazine’s Michigan Salute to Diversity Award.

Tulsa Chamber names most inclusive businesses
35 Tulsa area businesses were honored in October at a morning event that also featured keynote speaker Noel Hornsberry, Senior Diversity and Inclusion Partner for Kellogg Co. Award winners were determined based on their responses to an annual survey conducted by the Chamber’s Mosaic Initiative. The 2015 survey drew 182 responses, a year over year increase of 116%.

Dubuque Chamber hosts sixth annual Diversity Summit
The Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce hosted more than 200 people at this year’s Diversity Summit, which featured cultural instructor Michael Quam. Quam, a former member of the Pentagon’s Afghanistan-Pakistan Cultural Teams, lead the group in a three-hour workshop on cultural intelligence.

Event connects minority suppliers with buyers
For the first time, the Grand Rapids Area (MI) Chamber of Commerce put on a “meet the buyer” event for its members. While the chamber has hosted a minority business showcase in years past, this was the first time they were intentional about connecting those small business owners and entrepreneurs with area corporate buyers.

Regional Chamber joins with Minority Business Council
The St. Louis Minority Business Council is merging with the St. Louis Regional Chamber. The move comes after the two groups formed a strategic alliance last year. The chamber will provide administrative functions so that council staff can focus on their mission to support the growth of minority-owned businesses.

Decatur-Morgan Co. Chamber of Commerce hosts diversity summit
On October 13, the Decatur-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce hosted its annual Diversity Summit which included a panel discussion with representatives from 3M and the Alabama Department of Labor as well as a forum for job seekers to apply for jobs, print off resumes, and get face-time with area HR managers. The day culminated with the chamber’s annual Diversity Banquet that evening.

Featured Resources

Click the links to explore a selection of valuable resources available on

Convention Resources
Did you miss out on the 2015 convention in Montreal? Are you looking to relive the experience? No problem! Presentations and handout materials from many of our sessions are now available online.

2015 Mosaic Inclusion Report
This report highlights some of the key improvements that the Tulsa business community made, based on responses to Mosaic’ Third Annual Inclusive Workplace survey. You’ll also find a list of top inclusive companies in the region and a few of their success stories. For a full look at this year’s survey data, you can also review the executive summary.

Upcoming Events

D&I Division Monthly Roundtable Call
Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016
2-3 p.m. EST
Please mark your calendar for the monthly conference call of ACCE’s Diversity & Inclusion Division. Here’s what you need to participate:
Dial: (605) 562-3180
Pin: 509-142-707

Join your peers for this best practice-sharing roundtable conference call!

This is an open participation roundtable conference call, not a seminar. Come prepared to share your thoughts and experiences, and build your professional network!

ACCE's Official Corporate Sponsors
Accrinet AMEX Central Holidays Central Holidays
Google Insperity IVDesk Market Street
National Chamber Program / Office Depot Places Mobile

Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives

1330 Braddock Place, Suite 300, Alexandria, VA 22314
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