Acknowledging Chamber Growth

This blog is about acknowledging Chamber growth, something that is clearly evident by recent events and activities presented by the Tuskegee Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC).

A large crowd packed the meeting held on Monday, February 26, 2018.  Many of the attendees were Chamber members. However, others came to test the water and decide whether to take the plunge. Everyone was excited about what they saw and heard.

Held at the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Center, we were seated in the Industrial Manufacturing lab, surrounded by truly amazing equipment. School Superintendent Dr. Jacqueline Brooks provided an overview of the various programs that are offered as a pipeline to real-life work, including nursing.

Spencer Ferguson, the instructor who teaches Industrial Manufacturing classes, demonstrated the robotics equipment that is a game changer. Used to teach Macon County high school students during regular school hours, it can also transform the lives of adults who are unemployed or underemployed. Adults can attend evening classes and position themselves for work at automotive manufacturing plants that pay good salaries. The adult classes are free to participants.

Tuskegee University, Dean of the Business College, Dr. Kai Koong attended along with Michael Tullier, head of the university’s Communications and Marketing Office. The Chamber meeting was their platform to discuss the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) and why community engagement is a priority.

Chamber officer Bobby Davis, who is also Vice Chair of the Macon County Economic Development Authority (MCEDA), reported on several projects under the MCEDA umbrella, including the T-100.

Chamber officer Roland Vaughan enlightened the crowd concerning infrastructure work at Exit 38 and also discussed the Montgomery Chamber’s Eggs and Issues Breakfast held on Thursday, February 22, 2018 where Senator Richard Shelby expressed support for the T-100.

Also on February 22nd, we held our Eggs and Issues Breakfast at the Kellogg Hotel with Tuskegee University President, Dr. Charlotte Morris as guest speaker. Chamber Special Projects Committee Chairperson, Jamelle McDade said the local Eggs and Issues was an overall success.

The chairperson of the Chamber’s Tourism and Business Development Committee, Noah Hopkins, reported on a fact-finding mission he recently organized. 19 stakeholders from Macon County traveled to Thomasville, Alabama on February 9, 2018 and discovered this town of 4,500 residents has 300 businesses, 26 restaurants and a municipal budget of $11 million.

Back to the Chamber meeting, it ended after a few announcements; Dr. Brooks encouraged everyone to read books during the month of March, which is dedicated to Read Across Macon County. She also led a tour of other classrooms at the CTE facility.

Dr. Elaine Harrington repeated her offer to pay the $5 annual membership dues for 20 Tuskegee University students. And following an appeal to join the Chamber, there was a boost in membership through online registrations via the organization’s Website, www.tuskegeeareachamber.org.

The Chamber thanks those who took the plunge. Chamber officers feel this is a wise choice for anyone who is concerned about business matters.