Ann Silver: Good business citizenship (voices)

Ann Silver is CEO of the Reno + Sparks Chamber of Commerce.

Ann Silver is CEO of the Reno + Sparks Chamber of Commerce.

I’m frequently asked by individuals and companies, “Why join the Reno + Sparks Chamber of Commerce?” Firstly, membership promotes intentional engagement in good “business citizenship” and support for our community’s economic well-being. Over 90% of Nevada’s licensed businesses are considered “small businesses” and it’s fair to say we all rely on them for the goods and services we purchase daily, whether for our personal or professional use.

Secondly, our Chamber advocates for business-friendly legislation and works vigorously to oppose any proposed federal, state, or local regulation that hampers free enterprise or increases government intervention.

We strive to be transparent with our priorities and work with both sides of the aisle to promote a fair balance between rapid growth and a sustainable quality of life. “Smart growth” is what we all deserve and when member businesses thrive, so does the community, our residents, and the creation of career opportunities for future generations. Smart growth lays the foundation with roads, schools, childcare facilities, professional services, and cultural and outdoor amenities that should be in place before commercial and residential expansion occur. It doesn’t work well the other way around.

Lastly, our Chamber of Commerce offers extensive information to members through free webinars, monthly collaborative events, marketing and promotional opportunities, a weekly e-mail briefing, and advance notice of local, state, and federal grant opportunities. We publish an annual Public Policy Platform and flip the paradigm, choosing instead to keep candidates and elected officials informed of the Chamber’s positions on key matters rather than endorsing a candidate who may not support the needs of businesses when votes are taken. And we intervene when it comes to barriers that may impede business licensing, expansion, access to public transit, social resources, and other essential benefits that help recruit and retain needed personnel. Our Job Fair, scheduled at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center on June 15 is open to the public and recognizes that our members want and need people who desire to work and live independently.

We encourage local businesses to contact us and explore the value proposition of Reno + Sparks Chamber membership. Good business citizenship enables Reno, Sparks and Washoe County to thrive and sends a simple message that sustainable commerce is the most important ingredient for long-term success.
Ann Silver is CEO of the Reno + Sparks Chamber of Commerce.


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