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Chamber honoured for its advocacy work

Spring is a season of new growth. And, as one who is passionate about helping business grow, I am excited to be this year’s Chair of the Board of Directors of the Burlington Chamber of Commerce.

While most people have some understanding of the work the chamber does — networking, education and advocacy — much of that work is done quietly, behind the scenes.

As the world has become more complex the need to collaborate has grown. Going it alone and looking to figure it out by yourself is not just daunting, it’s darn near impossible. While we encourage our members to learn from each other we also practise what we preach.

Each year, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce conference provides an opportunity for local chamber leaders to meet and share successes and best practices, approve policies to advocate on behalf of business with the provincial government, and recognize outstanding work and achievement.

I learned much from my peers and proudly presented our resolution to improve the regulatory model, which was debated and approved. This policy encourages governments at all levels to review current legislation before implementing new legislation that may be in conflict.

A highlight was the Burlington Chamber receiving two outstanding achievements: Chair’s Advocacy Award and Accreditation with Distinction.

The Chair’s Advocacy Award is a prestigious award given to the chamber that has done outstanding work advocating to either a local, municipal, provincial or federal government. This year the Burlington Chamber of Commerce was recognized for its efforts in helping to reshape the model for economic development work done in the City of Burlington — a prime example of the behind the scenes work done by the chamber.

President Keith Hoey summed it up by saying, “We are very pleased to be recognized by the OCC for our work on this issue. The advocacy work done by the chamber often happens in the background and sometimes doesn’t get a lot of publicity so it’s nice to have our work acknowledged by our provincial counterpart.”

On two previous occasions, the Burlington Chamber has won awards from the OCC for innovative, business-focused education programs.

It is often difficult to translate the value we provide to the business community. Being recognized for our work helps us to tell our story, and our hopes are through these continued efforts it translates to a better business community, one where we all benefit and ultimately prosper.

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