A local voice of 1,100 members – representing more than 50,000 working East Texans – the Longview Chamber of Commerce is able to work with other chambers across the state and nation to create successful and impactful representation.
When Jessica LaRue thinks of the Longview Chamber of Commerce, she thinks of her children and their future.
“I believe in investing in the chamber because they believe in protecting and promoting business. Together, we can make an impact on generations to come,” LaRue said in a chamber testimonial. “It is important to me that my children and their children have an economic environment that allows them the opportunity not only to pursue their dreams but also to thrive.”
LaRue serves as the Chairman of the Longview Chamber of Commerce in 2023. As a partner with Harbour, Smith, Harris and Merritt Law Firm, LaRue knows the value of being part of the Longview Chamber of Commerce.
“I am committed to the Longview Chamber because they are committed to protecting and promoting business,” she said. “The chamber is my go-to organization.”
Telling the story of the Longview Chamber of Commerce means telling the stories of its members, its investors, and all those who make up the foundational support of the organization.
The Longview Chamber of Commerce is a voluntary organization of business and professional men and women who have joined together for the betterment of business, development of tourism, development of downtown Longview potential, and the overall quality of life in Longview.
The chamber is not funded by taxpayer dollars in the City of Longview. And while the chamber is focused on business and development, it also operates independently from the Longview Economic Development Corporation. According to information provided by the chamber, it is funded solely by its investors, the members through memberships, sponsorships, advertising, and registration to events.
The Longview Chamber of Commerce believes in protecting the business climate to ensure businesses can thrive.
“We do this through the power of our collective voice influencing policy, decisions, and outcomes,” said Kelly Hall, President and CEO of the Longview Chamber of Commerce. “We have built strong connections with influencers at local, state, and national levels. We have the ability to convene influencers to solve problems. Bottom line we exist to support the interest of our members. That is why we adopted our tagline Leading People. Leading Prosperity.”
Businesses, individuals, and organizations can join the chamber. When they do so, they help support their collective interests of all of the chamber’s members. While many members join to take part in the Chamber’s networking opportunities, they also work together to advocate for business-related issues.
As an independent organization, the chamber elects its board of directors. The Board hires the CEO and the CEO is charged with building a professional team to execute the strategic plan. Together, the board and leadership decide areas of focus.
While no chamber of commerce can “create” laws, they can help influence “pro-business policies,” Hall explained. They do so by lobbying elected officials at the local, state, and national levels.
“The Longview Chamber of Commerce has done a fantastic job of advocating for businesses in East Texas for many, many years,” Mark Robinson, External Affairs Manager for AEP Southwestern Electric Power Co. (SWEPCO), said in a Chamber testimonial.
Robinson, who serves on the Chamber’s Board of Directors, said the chamber advocates at the local, state, and national levels for Longview businesses.
“The Longview Chamber stands beside you and promotes and defends your cause,” Robinson added. “The chamber’s job is to promote your business and make our community a better place to do business.”
Kevin Hood, who served as the 2022 Chairman of the Longview Chamber of Commerce, said anyone who sees an existing issue or hears about proposed legislation that could be negative can bring the issue to the local chamber. “If you see an existing issue or proposed legislation that may be negatively affecting your business, you can bring the issue to our chamber,” said Hood, who serves as President of Texas Bank and Trust. “We have a great team who has built relationships across the country and has access to resources that can help businesses of all sizes attack the problems they are facing.”
Not only are chamber members part of advocating for issues and networking opportunities, there are also many other benefits that come with being part of the Longview Chamber of Commerce. Businesses are listed in the chamber’s online directory, and member businesses and their employees could be highlighted in chamber publications or on the website.
Longview Chamber of Commerce membership opportunities include ribbon cuttings for new members and networking events. The chamber also hosts several large annual programs, including its Annual Banquet, Small Business Awards Luncheon, and the State of Series (City, County, Education, Economy).
“There are numerous win-win opportunities for sponsoring events and marketing your company,” Hall said. “When we invest together, we strengthen our community and your business.” By bringing together a local voice of 1,100 members – representing more than 50,000 working East Texans – the Longview Chamber of Commerce is able to work with other chambers across the state and nation to create successful and impactful representation.
Longview Chamber’s premiere business event. It brings together top business and community leaders to celebrate the vibrancy of our trade area. The Large Business and Manufacturer of the Year are recognized, as well as other organizational awards.
Recognizes remarkable small businesses in the Longview trade area who demonstrate success through sales and profit, potential for long-term success, and their commitment to the community.
New member businesses enjoy the opportunity for a Chamber ribbon cutting during their first year of membership!
Brings the business community together in one location on one day for collaboration opportunities. This summit also features power networking sessions, Small Business Awards, the Leadership Longview graduation.
Our annual golf tournament that marks a celebration of years of community support, honor, spirit, competition, friendships, and charity. The field of 100 golfers is made up of some of the most influential members of the local business community, as well as dignitaries from the surrounding area.
Quarterly networking breakfast and after work member networking events. These events provide opportunity for businesses to come together and visit with one another in a relaxed environment.
A full day event focused on helping businesses protect their companies and thrive in an era of cyber-attacks.
The Chamber’s bi-annual event in collaboration with other area Chambers of Commerce to meet with Texas elected officials in Austin to discuss pressing needs in East Texas.
Growth and development workshops for young professionals.
The annual luncheon is held for community leaders and business professionals as Longview’s Mayor celebrates the city’s accomplishments and its future.
Gregg County Judge Bill Stoudt is joined by the four city managers in Gregg County to discuss topics important to the future of our area.
A luncheon focused on where we are as a city, county, and nation in regards to our economy.
Acquiring and retaining talent is a huge issue today and this luncheon will seek to address not only the challenges, but also offer possible solutions.
Code!Longview is an event where middle and high schools from across the Longview area will come together to build apps, games, and much more with the power of code.
Leadership Longview is a 9-month program that provides participants the opportunity to better understand our community by meeting with and learning from today’s community leaders
These are trips to other communities who have faced and found solutions to challenges similar to our own. Almost a dozen years of these events have resulted in meaningful upgrades to our city.
Our annual summit highlights one or more of the components of our HealthyVIEW initiative for our business leaders.
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