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Wilson’s local business advocacy group just became the third chamber of commerce in the state to receive national accreditation.
“Attaining accreditation from the U.S. Chamber affirms that we’re serving the Wilson market at an extraordinarily high level,” said Wilson Chamber of Commerce President Ryan Simons. “There are over 7,000 local chambers of commerce in the country and only 217 earn this distinction. Our members and community should be proud that we’re performing in the top 3% of chambers nationwide, striving to be the very best representative voice of our business community.”
Simons said accreditation has been a goal for several years, but daily operations have always taken priority. From the annual meeting in January through the application deadline in August, he said many days included time devoted to putting together the accreditation package. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce accreditation measures a chamber’s polices, organizational procedures and community involvement.
“It is critical that business leaders have a voice int he debates that will shape the business climate in their communities,” Raymond P. Towle, U.S. chamber vice president of federation relations and Institute for Organization Management, said in a news release. “Accreditation recognizes a chamber’s work to foster a healthy business climate that enhances the quality of life for its members and its community.”
This is the first time the chamber has been accredited. While the organization did not attain a star ranking, the chamber will pursue that level of accreditation when leadership reapplies in five years.
“It didn’t surprise me that many of our operations already adhered to accreditation requirements. That is a testament to the strong leadership the chamber has always had, including previous boards of directors and staff,” Simons said. “What proved challenging was translating many of our routine tasks into established, deliverable policy. For example, our chamber has always maintained strong, nonpartisan relationships with our elected officials. How do we formalize that approach into a governmental affairs program that best serves the Wilson business community while also meeting best practices shared by respected local chambers of commerce nationwide?”
Simons said he’s proud of his staff and volunteers on the board of directors for working hard to represent the Wilson business community. He said chamber members always expect exemplary services and the accreditation provides assurance of that commitment.
“Furthermore, accreditation affirms that we’re helping grow this market in a responsible and sustainable way,” he said. “This should pay off for the community as well. As Wilson continues to establish itself as a premier destination for business, industries who relocate from other markets can come confidently knowing that there’s an organization here fully committed to helping them succeed.”
Visit www.wilsonncchamber.com/ for more information on member benefits, programs and events.