Saturday, February 06, 2010
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Chamber lays out new structure for 2010 to better serve members and community

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[February 06, 2010]  After months of planning, the Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce has adopted a new organizational structure. Late in 2009 the chamber's board of directors began meeting to evaluate the committee structure of the chamber. The board wanted to assess whether the current committees fit into the mission of the chamber, if they fulfilled the mission established by each committee and if the committees could be doing more to serve the needs of the members.

The board found that many of the chamber's committees were fulfilling their mission and serving a purpose. The results from these meetings are as follows:
  • The Agriculture Committee will still exist and so will the very successful annual Ag Scholarship Breakfast. The committee will explore other ways to serve the ag community and engage them in the chamber.

  • The chamber has formed an Education Committee that serves as an umbrella over the newly renamed Higher Education Committee (formerly Student Welcome Committee), a seminar task force and the government-education roundtable. The roundtable is made up of representatives from school districts, regional office of education, city, county, Community Action, public library, Logan-Mason Rehab, colleges and university, county health department, Main Street, and more.

  • The Marketing, Membership and Ambassador committees will all continue to do the work of promoting chamber members and Logan County.


  • Leadership Academy is a strong program that will remain a part of the chamber structure.

  • The Lincoln Art & Balloon Festival is an event that enhances the business environment for the benefit of chamber members and Lincoln and Logan County, so the chamber has decided to continue to host this annual event that attracts thousands of individuals to our community. In order to make this event better and more viable and help it grow, they plan to form an advisory committee to help secure funding. This funding will allow for more non-balloon activities to engage attendees.

  • What was missing from the chamber's daily work was the advocacy role that the mission states the chamber will provide. It was unanimously voted that a Public Affairs Committee should be formed. On this committee will be chamber business members interested in having a voice in city, county, state and even U.S. government. Policies are set that directly affect the daily operations of local businesses large and small alike, so why shouldn't these businesses have a voice? Through this new committee, chamber members will be kept informed on what is going on at all levels of government.

    • One of the first actions the chamber plans through the new committee is to host an event and invite members and the community to learn about the state of the city, county, state and nation. The chamber is hoping to have the mayor, county board chairman, a representative of the Illinois State Chamber of Commerce and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce come and speak on what issues to be aware of, what progress has been made and what the plans are for the future.

    • Another initiative coming soon from this new committee is for the Illinois Fair Map Amendment. The chamber will collect signatures for a petition to put the power in the hands of the people of Illinois, not the politicians, to draw the lines of the Illinois electoral maps. This process should be open to the public, and the public should be a part of the process. For more information, check Call the chamber office for a petition or to sign the petition.

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  • The chamber is also going to invest more resources in the Healthy Communities Partnership Education Task Force. This task force is a good fit for the chamber, as the Healthy Communities Partnership began as the chamber's Healthcare Committee years ago. The Healthy Communities Partnership is now under the umbrella of Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital and is administered by Kristi Lessen. The Education Task Force is just one of many in the HCP. The chamber feels that the objective of increasing graduation rates in Logan County is vital to the success of the community. These young individuals are the future work force of businesses. High school dropouts can cost a community on average $221,000 individually over a lifetime (Pantagraph AP article).

  • The chamber will also create a task force to help plan educational workshops and seminars for members. The chamber is considering possibly opening these educational opportunities to the entire business community. They are exploring topics such as customer service, QuickBooks training, nonprofit governance and marketing, to name a few. If you have any ideas for workshops or seminars, please contact the chamber.

If you are interested in joining the chamber or want to serve on one of the chamber's many committees, please call 217-732-2385 or go to

The Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce is a not-for-profit agency that provides advocacy for business by providing leadership, programs and services that create, protect and enhance the business environment for the benefit of chamber members and Lincoln and Logan County.

For an organizational chart of the chamber of commerce, click here.

[Text from file received from the Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce]

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