Welcome to The Carnation City!

The Alliance Chamber of Commerce, located in Alliance, Ohio, has been a staple in the community for over 90 years, providing leadership to its members, protecting their interests while promoting their businesses.

With a membership totaling over 400, the Chamber's tradition of community leadership continues strong into the 21st century.

CHAMBER BOARD ELECTS NEW MEMBERS AND OFFICERS

The Alliance Area Chamber of Commerce membership recently voted to renew the following members to the Board of Directors. The members below will begin a new three-year term on April 1:

  • Dustin Burgess - Nationwide Insurance
  • Jeff First - First Realty
  • Ken Loiselle - Carnation Security Services
  • Rob Todor - The Review

The following new members have been elected to serve a three-year term beginning April 1:

  • Rick Baxter - Consumers National Bank
  • Gloria Magrath - Alliance YWCA
  • Eva Murphy - Don Pancho's Restaurant

Officers elected for the 2016-2017 year, which begins April 1st are:

  • Chairman: Dustin Burgess, Nationwide Insurance
  • First Vice Chairman: Rob Todor,The Review
  • Second Vice Chairman: Ken Loiselle, Carnation Security Services
  • Treasurer: Greg Blasiman, Bruner-Cox LLP
  • Secretary: R. Mark Locke, Alliance Area Chamber of Commerce

The Board of Directors would like to give a special thanks to Dave Mitchell for his year of service as Chairman of the Board and his continued service to the board.

Thank you for your commitment of time to the Alliance Area Chamber of Commerce!

Chamber News & Upcoming Events

What's New at the Alliance Chamber?

We are working on several new programs and committees to help serve our members better. First of all, you should have received a letter introducing you to a program called HR Gear. HR Gear is a comprehensive, authoritative explanation of the Human Resources laws, forms, checklists, policies, model documents, trends and developments that you will refer to every day.

It is designed to provide business owners and managers -and their advisers-with the practical and legal information they need to effectively and efficiently deal with the many HR and other business compliance issues they encounter on a daily basis.

You can access HR Gear from the Chamber's home page. Simply click on the HR Gear link in the upper left hand corner and enter your username and password and you will have immediate and unlimited access to all of the business tools, forms, information and resources needed to help you in your human resource departments. This service is offered at no additional charge to our Chamber members. If you need your username and password just give the Chamber office a call.

You will soon be hearing about two new committees that have recently been formed. The first is a Tourism Committee. We have numerous venues in the Alliance community that attract visitors from all over. Unfortunately it is difficult for these groups to work together to put together marketing packages that the all can use. This committee will consist of all these venues plus the hotels in town. A representative from the Stark County Convention and Visitors Bureau will also be a part of thee committee. They will be able to work together to increase exposure to each of their venues. Sue Snode from Tannenhauf Golf Club has offered to chair this committee.

A subcommittee of the Tourism Committee will be an Arts Council. This group will work with Arts in Stark to help promote the arts in the Alliance Community. Once again we have numerous artists in the Alliance area that need a way to work together to help promote what they each have to offer. This council will be that vehicle to help with that communication. We are looking for a chair for this council.

In the very near future we hope to be introducing an educational video program. This program will offer a library of videos that you will be able to access off of the Chambers website that provide practical, actionable, real world skills to your business. The catalog offers over 200 affordable, fun and user-friendly courses designed to educate owners & employees in a wide range of areas such as: compliance & risk mitigation, financial services, business skills, accounting and QuickBooks, HR management, sales, MS Office programs, customer service and many more. The videos will be available to our members for a discounted price.

As you can see we are constantly looking for new programs to help your business succeed. We hope you will take advantage of all these programs.

STARK COUNTY CONVENTION AND VISITORS' BUREAU TO BECOME INDEPENDENT ORGANIZATION

The Stark County Convention and Visitors' Bureau (CVB) has announced that it is taking the final steps necessary to become an independent organization.

The Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce (Chamber) and CVB have been working together to develop plans to separate the two organizations and create an independent CVB. A special committee comprised of representatives from both organizations, in conjunction with the Stark County Commissioners' office, laid the groundwork for this transition over several months.

The CVB, funded by lodging tax which is administered through the Stark County Commissioners, has existed as a department of the Chamber since the CVB's inception in 1980. Leadership from both organizations agree that the timing is right to elevate the CVB's position within the community to allow for future growth. The impact of travel and tourism in Stark County has grown exponentially over recent years, giving the CVB the financial viability to stand as its own entity. Achieving an independent CVB for Stark County has been a long-term objective for both organizations; self-supported CVBs are the industry standard across the country.

"Recognizing the increasing opportunities within the travel and tourism industry was a real catalyst for the creation of an independent organization," said Anne Graffice, CVB chairwoman. "The primary objective is to position the CVB as a driver for economic growth and to serve the region as experts in travel and tourism."

Mark Fleiner, Chamber Board senior vice chairman and liaison to this project agreed, "The landscape of travel and tourism in our region is changing and growing. We believe that now is the time to lift the CVB "up and out" as an independent entity positioned to develop and grow the impact of travel and tourism in the region."

The CVB and Chamber will continue to work closely in several ways. Not only will the two organizations continue to collaborate on a number of regional projects, they will continue to maintain shared office space at 222 Market Ave N in downtown Canton, as well as certain shared services, including accounting, graphic design and IT support. This allows both organizations to maximize efficiency and synergy. The CVB will be moving to street-level office space to allow for maximum exposure for visitors.

"This is an exciting time not only for the CVB, but for Stark County and the surrounding region," said Allyson Bussey, Interim Executive Director of the CVB. "With plans for projects like the Hall of Fame Village, the increase in the arts and cultural landscape and the addition of almost 800 new hotels rooms in Stark County, our organization is ready to embrace these opportunities. We are truly thankful for the Chamber's support for the CVB, which has helped us grow over the past three decades and now as we move forward independently."

Questions regarding the CVB becoming an independent entity should be directed to Chairwoman, Anne Graffice at: 330.823.2030

More Chamber News...

** REMEMBER ATHENA SCHOLARSHIP IN YOUR ANNUAL GIVING **

The Woman of the Year/Athena Scholarship Fund was established in 2013, thanks to the generosity of the Alliance community, and the collaboration between the Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Alliance Foundation. The scholarship is awarded to a female graduating senior who exemplifies community service, academic achievement and leadership potential. The honoree must reside within Alliance City, Marlington Local, Sebring or West Branch Local School districts, and must attend and anticipate graduation from one of those schools or from St Thomas Aquinas.

Alexandrea Garrett was the first scholarship recipient and she is a pre-med student at North- east Ohio Medical University (NEOMED.) Alexis Austin is the 2015 scholarship recipient and she is headed to Capital University to study pediatric nursing.

Alexandrea Garrett was the first scholarship recipient and she is a pre-med student at North- east Ohio Medical University (NEOMED.) Alexis Austin is the 2015 scholarship recipient and she is headed to Capital University to study pediatric nursing.

The charitable fund agreement with the Greater Alliance Foundation stipulates that the scholarship is paid directly to the college or university in which the honoree is enrolled. It is hoped that this scholarship, awarded annually, will continue in perpetuity. Please consider this worthwhile initiative in your charitable giving! Your tax deductible donation can be in honor of, or in memory of a significant woman in your life and is payable to the Greater Alliance Foundation. Simply write "Athena Scholarship" on the memo line and mail to the Foundation.

Thanking you for your support!

Woman of the Year/Athena Scholarship committee

HR Gear - access to business tools, forms, information and resources

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