July 10, 2017
The Chamber as a Convener
Con-ven-er; A person (or organization in this case) that calls people together for a defined purpose.
Inherent in this word, “Convener” there is power, authority, respect, trust and knowledge, among other attributes. I say this not to brag about the eight member staff at the Lodi Chamber, we are only a part. More so, it’s the approximately eight hundred business members… governed by a thirteen-member board of directors, chosen by our members to lead the chamber in its mission to help businesses succeed and our community thrive.
In the eight hundred, there is power; the amalgamation of this number of individuals produces a wealth of knowledge and experience. Because they all have invested thousands, to millions of their own money into their local businesses and therefore the community, they can be trusted to do the right thing by the community. For all of these reasons the chamber is respected. And if I may enlarge upon the definition… when the chamber convenes a group for a critical need or good reason, leaders and influencers come. Because they know good things will come from it.
In the last fifteen years there have been many of those gatherings of influencers and leaders. The table of twenty-two who came together to write the ‘Blueprint for the Future’ to help guide the city’s General Plan; the advocacy team that fought against ‘no-growth’ voices to help Reynolds Ranch Partners save 600 Blue Shield Jobs (which has grown to 1,000) and now also another 800 retail jobs at the Harney Lane and Highway 99 intersection.
In 2014 the chamber convened over seventy leaders and influencers for an economic look forward for Lodi. They came together, focused on five areas of great challenge and great opportunity. New opportunities are being born in Lodi because of this work. The “Eastside” is evolving to The Heritage District, this school year the Lodi Jobs Academy will be graduating a more work-ready young employees, Bike Lodi was born out of the Tourism Vision Action Team (VAT), and they are on their own and doing great! Asset Based Community Development is moving forward with resident-driven projects, providing the blueprint for the Mayor’s Love Your Block program. There are only about forty more action steps to be completed for building Lodi toward a better community in 2020.
These are but a sampling of what has happened when the Chamber convenes leaders and influencers.
The attributes of trust, depth of knowledge, community respect, advocating and championing for Lodi all help the chamber to be seen as a Pillar in the community and help us stay the course to insure we have a strong brand.
The Lodi Chamber wants to earn those brand descriptors every day by being a Catalyst for business growth, a Champion for our community and a Convener of leaders and influencers who want the best for Lodi.
President & CEO
Lodi District Chamber of Commerce