Traverse Chamber Bulletin
Top Talk
March 23, 2016
Congratulations to our SBC Top 10
Another outstanding group of companies has risen to the top of the class in the Chamber's 2016 Small Business Celebration.  Congratulations to these 10 SBC finalists in the running for the Hagerty Small Business of the Year Award:

Krause Realty Solutions
Traverse Dental Associates
Northern Lightning Wash
Studio 415
Epic Powersports
GFA, Inc.
Williams & Bay Pumping Service
City Mac
All Season's Hotel & Resort
"This is an exciting year for the Top 10 finalists in the Small Business  Celebration.  For many of these businesses, this is the first year participating and the enthusiasm, creativity and entrepreneurial spirit is evident," said SBC Judge Tammy Tarsa, owner of Integrity Home Health and Skilled Care which was the Hagerty Small Business of the Year in 2011. "The Grand Traverse Region is fortunate to have so many wonderful small businesses and we as judges are honored to be a part of this process and are excited to learn more about these Top 10 businesses."

These companies and their leaders will be featured at the SBC's Meet the Top 10 Breakfast coming up April 19 at 7:30 a.m. at NMC's Hagerty Center. Register here. 

The Hagerty Small Business of the Year will be unveiled at the SBC Awards Ceremony on May 4 at 4:30 p.m., also at NMC's Hagerty Center. Register here. 

The Small Business Celebration is sponsored by:

Oblinger to Step Down from the Chamber
Executive Director Laura Oblinger announced her resignation from the organization this week, effective May 31. She's been an integral part of the Chamber and the Traverse City business community since joining the organization in 2003. Here's the Chamber's official statement
IMPACT |  Advocacy for Business
Chambers Target Soo Locks, Great Lakes in Washington
Chamber representatives from throughout the Midwest were in Washington last week to meet with federal lawmakers as part of the Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition Annual Fly-In. The coalition includes the Traverse City Area Chamber and the Northern Michigan Chamber Alliance.

Chamber/Alliance Government Relations Director Kent Wood said it was a productive two days of meetings as the Coalition is advocating for more $1.263 billion for the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund, $758 million for the Department of Energy's Fossil Energy Research and Development Program and continued funding of $300 million for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

The Coalition is also pushing for quick passage of the Water Resources Development Authorization bill this year, which includes research and preparatory funding for upgrades to the Soo Locks in Sault Ste. Marie that are critical to continued shipping on the Great Lakes.

Wood can provide more information on legislative priorities of the Coalition at
CONNECT |  Events and Programs
US-131 Corridor Update at Kalkaska Luncheon
There's been extensive research completed along the US-131 Corridor in and around Kalkaska. Find out what it means for the community and specifically the business sector at the annual Kalkaska Luncheon coming up April 27 starting at 11:30 a.m. at the Kalkaska Church of Christ. Consultants Mac McClelland and Woody Smith will present "A Framework for Growth and Investment in Kalkaska" in a program that members of the local business community won't want to miss.

Click here to register and also submit your nominations for the Kalkaska Business and Citizen of the Year.

The Kalkaska Luncheon is presented by:

INSPIRE |  Leadership Development
See What the YP Excitement is About
There's an exciting new vibe to the Chamber's Young Professionals program. An infusion of new members, informative new programs, and expanded social events and volunteer opportunities has the Chamber YPs clicking on all cylinders.

If your business has young staff members up to age 40 who are looking to get involved in a group that can offer professional development instruction, social engagement and volunteer opportunities, they need to check out the Chamber's Young Professionals. Click here to learn more or contact 2016 YP Chair Lauren Harris. 
Partner News
Create 'Raving' Fans
Road construction projects can create frustration for motorists, but nobody uses creativity and customer service like Team Elmer's to make the best of these situations.  Team Elmer's marketing and communication director Tonya Wildfong will share those tips and how to create a strong customer-service culture in your company at the next Leadership Lunch Club coming up April 8 at 11 a.m. Register here.
Upcoming Events
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April 19
Small Business Celebration Meet the Top 10 Breakfast; 7:30 - 9 a.m. at NMC's Hagerty Center 
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