Chamber news & updates
Week of September 14, 2020
Chamber Blog
6 Tips for Pivoting Professionally:
Making the Career Change With No Experience
Many businesses have pivoted in what they offer to better match the needs of their customers. If you're recognizing a need to make a change professionally to a career that is more in demand than your current one, it might be time.

But how do you make that switch if you have no experience in the type of job you want? We have some tips for you this week on the blog.

The Chamber blog is published weekly on Monday. It contains helpful information for professional and business growth. 

Recent posts include important topics like: COVID operating tips, how to start a business in Alameda, and ways to increase sales. Find the solution you need.
Take the Local Challenge:
These Businesses Need Your Help
Support Alameda Small Businesses
COVID-19 has taken its toll on small operations, but with your support they can come back. Make a pledge today to purchase just one thing from a local business that you usually buy from somewhere else.

Just a single switch in something as basic as where you get your morning coffee can make a difference in a small business owners life, especially if we all vow to take this challenge.
Buying local and shopping small helps ensure businesses without large reserves can continue to function during COVID.

But it's easy to forget to shop local. To help remind you, we have partnered with an organization to bring you the Visit & Shop Alameda eGift Card that keeps money here in our community.

These eGift cards make wonderful teachers' gifts as well as rewards for employees, holiday bonuses, and caregiver thank you gifts. Give the gift of local and help your neighbors with this wonderful gift card.
Get More Customers with the
Visit & Shop Alameda Gift Card Program
Support Alameda Small Businesses
If you're a business owner and you long for more customers, check out the free Visit & Shop Alameda Gift Card Program.

It's free to participate for all businesses. The eCard can be run through your POS so no additional software or tools are required.

The Chamber, the City of Alameda, Downtown Alameda, and the West Alameda Business Association will market your business and its affiliation with the program for more customers.

Best of all, It costs you nothing!

Chamber Academy Webinars
Wednesday, September 16th
10:00 am
Federal Debt Economics

What are the different ways we measure federal debt and deficits? 

Geoffrey Woglom, Professor of Economics Emeritus at Amherst College discusses traditional ideas of the economic costs of the debt and why recent events have caused economists to rethink these issues. 

In particular, Professor Woglom will describe Modern Monetary Theory, which argues that there are no costs to debt. He will also address another view that the costs may be smaller than we thought as long as we stabilize the debt when the pandemic is over. Stabilizing the debt, however, will require reducing deficits from their pre-pandemic levels of five percent of GDP to under one percent of GDP. How do we do that?

Geoffrey Woglom is a Professor of Economics Emeritus at Amherst College where he taught for over 40 years. During his career, he has been a consultant at the Federal Reserve Board and the International Monetary fund and held visiting positions at Harvard, Cambridge, LSE, and Nanjing Universities. 
Wednesday, September 16th
1:00 pm
Grow Your Business Network With Social Media
Social media influencers share how to grow your business network online to build a successful business, online and off. 

Moderator Joie Gharrity will share her strategies and tips on how to build an extensive online network that she derived from 15+ years of working in the Hollywood entertainment industry, so you can do the same. 

Roxanne Lynch will introduce her best tips on how to show up on social media with transparency, thereby standing out and gaining a bigger presence online for increased social sales. 

Heidi Parr Kerner will share tools and tips on how to create your own network to support you and your business. Heidi is known as the queen of networking on both coasts. 
Measure Z: How Will It Affect You?
Monday, September 14th, 7:00 PM
From A to Z:
Learn how Measure Z impacts businesses, their employees, and our community.

Learn about the measure to repeal zoning law Article 26/Measure A on your November Ballot.
Article 26 was passed and implemented in 1973 (after a citywide vote). Its goal was to stop the construction of “multiple dwelling units.” As modified by 1991’s Measure A, it limits housing density to one home per 2,000 square feet.

Measure Z, which would repeal Article 26/Measure A is on the November 3, 2020 ballot. A supermajority of the Alameda City Council agreed to let the voters decide what's in the best interest of the Island going forward.
Learn what Measure Z could mean for you and your business.

The Alameda Chamber of Commerce will host guests presenting both sides of the issue:

In favor of Measure Z speakers:
  • Vice Mayor John Knox White
  • Penumbra Chief Executive Officer Adam Elsesser

Opposed to Measure Z speakers:
  • Retired attorney and long time Alameda resident Paul Foreman 
  • Culinary educator and consultant Peter Conn
Meet the Candidates
Thursday, October 8th, 5:00 pm
Register for the Alameda City Council Candidates Forum.

Hosted by Alameda Chamber Of Commerce, Downtown Association, and West Alameda Association.
Senator Nancy Skinner
COVID Updates, Wildfire Preparedness, and Insurance Response

Congresswoman Barbara Lee
The comprehensive “THRIVE Agenda” responds to ongoing crises of COVID-19, climate change, racial injustice, and economic inequity.

Business Reopening Resources
Get the latest information on COVID-19, funding programs, and government initiatives on these sites:

Learn more about the Corona Virus relief options available, including if you qualify, and how to apply.

Please take California’s Resilient Business Challenge and get important resources to plan and prepare for disasters at

Course Alert: Serious About Owning and Operating a Restaurant?
Overview:  Anyone thinking about serving food and drink to the public, whether it’s a full-service restaurant or a small local coffee shop, needs to understand the basics of operating a successful establishment. This is a 3-hour course covering the basics of owning and operating a restaurant at the current time during COVID-19.
City of Alameda Updates
The City of Alameda, in collaboration with the West Alameda Business Association, the Alameda Chamber of Commerce, and Downtown Alameda Business Association, established the Alameda Strong Relief Fund to help small businesses, nonprofit organizations, and residential renters in Alameda.

Applications for the first round of small business grants are closed but you can still make a tax-deductible donation.

Effective 9/4/2020:
Alameda County revised its Shelter in Place health order to align with the State’s purple tier permitted activities. For the City of Alameda, this means indoor hair salons and barbershops as well as outdoor recreational activities (including batting cages and outdoor dance classes) are allowed to reopen.

It also means that retail stores are now subject to a 25% capacity and grocery stores have a 50% capacity. 

Next council meeting: September 15
Chamber Member Business Spotlight

Dr. Cindy Acker

The Child Unique Montessori School is in its 38th year on the Island. The school, which birthed Montessori Elementary School of Alameda, is an award-winning school renowned for its social justice underpinnings. The school has strong community involvement, interweaving student academics, love of learning and a commitment to equity and justice.

This year, TCU/MESA has become a model for a strong COVID protocol, which has been shared and used to train schools across the nation and Canada. The school has maintained small, secure cohorts, and specialized staff who disinfect all touched items during the entire day, ensuring that no child touches a surface twice. They have installed HEPA filter air filtration systems, and student-sized and student-friendly clear dividers, where distance is needed. Noteworthy is the full-scale and robust protocol, including solid staff training designed with the help of school leaders in China and Taiwan, and the incorporation of CDC and the public health department guidelines.

The Child Unique serves children from 18 months through kindergarten. Montessori Elementary School of Alameda (MESA) serves students from first grade through sixth grade. Student enrollment is only accepted every three weeks. 
For more information contact The Child Unique Montessori School or call 510.521.0595 or 510.521.9227.
From Our Members
Our Chamber = Community • Together We Are Stronger. Better. One.
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