April 2017

TCCE Annual Conference 2017  -- 
A Journey Like No Other
June 19-22, 2017, Clear Lake Area (League City)
By Cindy Harreld, IOM, 2017 Conference Chair

Are you ready for an OUT OF THIS WORLD JOURNEY? We are on the launch pad just waiting for lift-off, counting down to the 2017 TCCE Annual Conference hosted by the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce on June 19 th - June 22 nd .
It'll be a BLAST!

The conference committee has confirmed the programs and speakers and I guarantee there is something for everyone. You don't want to miss a minute.
We Are Go for Launch!
Monday, June 19th at 6:30 p.m.

We start off with games, food and fellowship for our early arrivers at Topgolf - Webster. You don't have to know anything about golf to play this game, just bring it. For our experienced golfers we've organized a tournament scramble for you to compete for a coveted trophy.
Tuesday, June 20th at 1:00 p.m.
  • Jim Mathis The Reinvention Pro will fire us up with What's "Kindling" Your Chamber
  • Breakout Sessions for every staff member
  • David Aaker  Customer Service Excellence
Tuesday evening we have a private tour and dinner at Space Center Houston, the museum for the NASA Johnson Space Center.  Space Center Houston is filled with artifacts and exhibits that allow you to experience the history and future of space travel.  You can touch the moon and even a piece of Mars.   
Still in Orbit!
Wednesday, June 22nd
  • Shari Pash, Top 10 For Membership Growth
  • State and National legislative updates
  • More ... Breakout Sessions
Wednesday evening we are honoring you!  Awards galore for your maps, magazines, campaigns and more.  Can't wait to see the best and the brightest STARS in our Chamber universe. Then we celebrate!  Show off your best Moonwalk, Robot, or Rocketman and join us as we dance the night way.  
Thursday, June 23rd
  • Jan Hargrave, Actions Speak Louder than Words; Understanding Nonverbal Communications
  • Brunch
  • Gene Kranz, Legendary NASA Flight Director.

You'll head back to your community inspired and ready for your mission! 

The Early Bird Gets to Play Golf, 
Sing Karaoke, &
Start Annual Conference with BIG FUN!
TCCE Annual Conference is always fun connecting with colleagues.  Each year we begin with a great activity in the community for those that arrive early.  This year we will be on our own private patio overlooking beautiful Webster, TX and seated surrounding the TCCE   Main Stage at TopGolf Webster.

Join your friends and colleagues for food, fun and games.  Along with dinner we will have a full competitive TopGolf Scramble, golf for fun, karaoke, and more.  It is a great way to get your conference started.  This is not included with the annual conference registration fee so please register  here.         


A reminder that early registration ends this coming Monday.  Don't miss out on the discounted rate.   CLICK HERE to register.

Helping Business...Helping People
Initiative seeks to ease the transition of parents and children during corporate/job-related relocation efforts.  

The Texas economy continues to boom and with that comes new jobs.  A side effect of new jobs is the need for individuals and their families to relocate to new, often unfamiliar, areas where they have little to no connections, support or understanding of local resources. The Moving Families Initiative could be a phenomenal tool in the Chamber toolbox to assist member companies and individuals as they move to your community by fulfilling its mission of connecting families (particularly children) with resources and extra-curricular activities to help them acclimate to their new surroundings quickly.  

Moving can be challenging for anyone, especially children. No one knows that better than Johnnie Johnson, the former University of Texas All-American and NFL All-Pro defensive back with the Los Angeles Rams, who gained sensitivity to the rigors of moving during his career in the NFL and later as a top-producing real estate agent.
Today, Johnson serves as CEO of World Class CoachesĀ®, which facilitates the Moving Families InitiativeĀ®, an international plan focused on serving, protecting and meeting the needs of parents moving or relocating with children ages 19 and younger. Included are the teachers, coaches, and school counselors who work with the parent's children.
"Moving can be challenging for parents, yet stressful for the children," said Johnson, "Our aim with the Initiative is to assist parents in making the move less traumatic for their entire family with a specific focus on assisting the kids in dealing with the physical and emotional challenges of changing neighborhoods, schools and friends, whether they're moving across town or across the country."
The Initiative connects transitioning families with certified real estate agents, service providers, teachers, coaches and others. The program's holistic approach enables all professionals to work from the same game plan to eliminate the stress of moving and ensure a smooth transition for parents and children alike. The goal is to simplify the moving process for parents and their entire family.

For additional information visit

Who Else Should Be Here?

TCCE provides excellent professional education and resources to its members.  As you look around your region ask yourself the question, "Who else should be here?"  Are there chamber professionals in your area that are not involved?  Do you know a chamber professional that would benefit from annual conference, needs resources or technical assistance?  Give them a call and encourage them to plug in or share their information with TCCE staff or Membership Vice-Chair Mary Siders (Levelland) and we will connect with them. 

Share the wealth of education, resources and connections with your fellow chamber professionals!
Finding the Right Fits for Volunteers
By Jim Johnson, IOM, Lufkin/Angelina County Chamber of Commerce

At the final session for the 35 th class of Leadership Lufkin, I had the opportunity to address the class about volunteer programs available through Lufkin/Angelina County Chamber of Commerce. The class was presented with a list of opportunities that ranged from our Diplomats Group to board member shadowing. Typically, with such a captive audience, I would cover all of our programs and conclude with "We Need Volunteers to be Successful." Instead, I put a twist on an old expression - "a square peg won't go into a round hole but a square peg always fits in a square hole."

Normally, our Chamber uses a broad approach to locate volunteers. We ask for help, throw out our net, and hope to catch the best possible volunteer but few times do we get these results. Our programs might be impressive and worth their time to volunteer, but if they aren't a good fit, the chance of longer term success is slim. Like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole - forced volunteerism isn't going to fit either.

One way to assist in finding the right fit is the creation of a Volunteer Handbook. The purpose of this handbook is to introduce the Chamber to volunteers, to provide information that will better enable the Chamber, through its volunteers and staff to undertake our mission, to provide an orientation to Chamber volunteers, to enhance volunteer development opportunities and to improve volunteer and team effectiveness. An effective handbook should be tailored to fit your Chamber but some key things to consider: 

Welcome NEW TCCE Members
We are always excited and look forward to welcoming new friends and faces to TCCE. Please welcome our newest members:

Greater Alton Chamber of Commerce                                         Budelia Rojas

Brownfield Chamber and Visitor Information Center             Lorena Valencia

Process Credit Cards, Earn Revenue for the Chamber, & Support YOUR Association with TCCE & Infintech

Increasingly the ability to do business online is more important for chambers and the businesses we serve.  Through the great partnership between TCCE and Infintech, LLC your chamber can streamline your payment processing, reduce costs, offer the service to your members and make MONEY for your chamber. 

It is simple and with new additions to the company, Infintech, now provides even greater value to chambers and chamber members.  Imagine reducing the cost of credit card processing for your chamber.  Now imagine while doing that earning additional revenue for chamber operations.  At the same time you can offer your members secure, best in class payment processing services as well benefits to enhance their businesses like:
  • Great Foreign Exchange Rates
  • Corporate Card Programs
  • Accounts Payable Automation
  • Large Ticket Processing (for cost reduction) and more
CLICK HERE FOR ADDITIONAL INFO  OR visit www. for a company overview, services and products.  

The program has been beneficial at TCCE and several Texas Chambers.  It has has both reduced operating costs as well as generated revenue.  To learn more or to get started, contact Kevin Walter at or (888) 908-6952 or the TCCE staff and we are happy to assist.  

2017 TCCE Chairman's Conference November 3--
Get Ready for 2018 Leadership Excellence
Training designed to get your chairman and board leadership ready for the year

The TCCE Chairman's Conference (formerly Volunteer Conference) allows chamber CEO's and their volunteer leaders to get on the same page operationally, organizationally and to function at optimal levels as a leadership team.  With up-to-date instruction on key areas of board/staff roles and responsibilities, organizational effectiveness, and leadership this one-day training prepares incoming volunteer leaders to take on their new roles.

Chairman's Conference is more than just a training.  It is the opportunity for Chamber CEO's to spend a full day with their incoming leaders hearing trends and key issues that will impact chambers as well as time to process them and develop strategies to address them in their home community.

This is an event that you do not want your Chairman to miss.  Make plans to attend, November 3, 2017.  For additional information and registration click HERE .

Silent Auction Anyone?
Each year, the TCCE Board of Directors raises dollars to provide scholarships for Texas Chamber Professionals to attend professional education events including TCCE meetings, U.S. Chamber Institute, ACCE and others.  The single source of revenue for these opportunities is the TCCE Silent Auction held each year at the TCCE Annual Conference.

We need YOUR help!  Please consider donating an auction item and then attend the conference and bid.  Auction items typically include weekend getaways/packages to your community, trips, memorabilia, art, jewelry and the like.  We appreciate your assistance and look forward to many years of providing access to chamber professionals in the state.  Please complete and forward the REGISTRATION FORM and a photo of your item to Camilla Rodriguez at     

On another, similar note, do you host a silent or live auction in your community?  Do you struggle with volunteers and the hassle of reconciling everything at the end of the night?  We have the solution for you!  Contact Aaron at TCCE (512-477-6721/ and he will share opportunities to streamline the process and make your auction life 1000% easier.
The Session Is In Full Swing and TCCE Helps Cover It For You 

Last month, TCCE announced the new Advocacy Resource Center for TCCE members.   We wanted to remind you about this resource and encourage your to use the weekly legislative update, podcasts and more.  To assist in building the resources available we ask that you share as well.  

If you have items to contribute (legislative agendas, committee structure, issue selection process, etc.) please share them with the TCCE staff so we may provide access for all members.  Simply email them to Gabriella Strong at the TCCE office at 

To view the latest weekly update click HERE.   

Important Upcoming Deadlines & Dates
May 2017
1 -  2017 TCCE Annual Conference Early Conference Registration Rate Ends
20 - 2017 Tenure Award Notification/Requests Due
27 - 2017 TCCE Annual Conference Hotel Reservation Special Rate Ends 

June 2017
1 - Last day to request a full refund for Annual Conference registration

July 2017
7 - Scholarship Applications due for TCCE Fall Chamber Basics

Around the State
Upcoming Chamber Regional Education/Networking Opportunities

If you have an event of regional or state impact you would like to share please email to 

State & National Opportunities

2017 Texas Employment Relations Symposium
July 12 - 14, 2017
Marriott Rivercenter (San Antonio)

2017 TAB Washington, D.C. Fly-In
September 11 - 13, 2017
Omni Shoreham Hotel (Washington, D.C.)

Midwest Institute
June 4 - 8, 2017
Madison, WI

Southeast Institute
June 25 - 28, 2017
Athens, GA

West Institute
July 9 - 13, 2017
Los Angeles, CA

Northeast Institute
July 20 - August 3, 2017
Villanova, PA

2017 Annual Convention
July 16 - 19, 2017
Nashville, TN

2017 Annual Conference
August 15 - 17, 2017
Fort Worth, TX

2017 Annual Conference 
October 18 - 20, 2017
Houston, TX

Faces & Places
New Chamber Professionals and Staff Changes in Texas

Esmeralda Villareal  was named President/ CEO at Brownsville Chamber.

Mark Mitchell was named President of the L ake Houston Economic Development Partnership. 

Greg Solomon  was named  President/CEO of the Copperas Cove Chamber.

Jeffrey Hentz was named President/CEO of the Port Aransas Chamber.

For information on open positions around the state CLICK HERE
If you have an update or know of a new professional in your area.  Please let us know.