Our Annual Community Awards Banquet is Friday, February 28th, 2020, at the Chehalem Cultural Center and the theme this year is “Alice in Wonderland!” Nominations have closed, but our committee is meeting to decide honorees on Wednesday, January 8th.

Leadership Chehalem Valley had an excellent Health & Human Services Day in December. The Steering Committee is showing exceptional leadership and ownership of the program, which seems to bring extra joy to our Chair Linda Sandberg. In February, our Cohort will be at the Oregon Capitol, with a morning training session by Gary Stewart and Tonna Farrar-Faxon on managing workplace conflict. Our graduation event will be Tuesday evening, May 19th, 2020.

Our next “Newberg Perk” event, presented with First Federal and Headwater Consulting, is Wednesday, Jan 15th, 7:30-8:30am with Sean Andries, Executive Director of the Chehalem Cultural Center with Board Member Rick Lee. The location is TBD between the First Federal Community Room or the Cultural Center.

As a new board member for the Newberg Historical Society, Josh Duder will present the history of our Chamber and chambers generally at the Newberg Noon Rotary Club, 12:00-1:00 on Wednesday, January 15th, at the Chehalem Cultural Center.

Abisha Stone at SEDCOR is diligently working with our Chamber and our local businesses to design a pilot program for industry-driven affordable workforce house, in connection to available funds for workforce housing through the Governor’s Office. Our conversations have started with educators and healthcare workers.

In civic updates, we’re looking forward to welcoming new Newberg City Manager Dan Weinheimer in February 2020. Chamber CEO, Shannon Buckmaster, was also appointed to the Ad Hoc Urban Renewal Citizens Advisory Committee. Mark Moisan and Brian Doyle have launched an efficient, relevant GAC newsletter that is being well-received by our membership. We also offered active support of our business owners in implementing the Single-Use Plastic Bag Ban, effective January 1, 2020, after our members shared that they needed more information and support.

Shannon recently attended The Association of Career & Technical Education’s annual conference in Anaheim, California, where she heard new ideas on non-traditional job shadow arrangements, adjusting for student equity and accessibility to CTE programs, solutions for barriers to successful student and employer relationships, and, through a chance meeting with two leaders from the Oregon Department of Education, generated leads for local opportunities for more efficient and regional collaboration.

Carr Biggerstaff, on behalf of CVIA, and I attended the Launch Mid-Valley Economic Development Meet Up with several of our economic development partners, including SEDCOR, MEDP, the Oregon Entrepreneur Network, Chemeketa CC and regional city representatives. We focused on our next opportunities for supporting our Willamette Valley Entrepreneurs.

In December, we hosted a fun Chamber After Hours – Holiday Party Edition – at the Blanchard House with Lifestyle Properties, wine by Sokol Blosser. Thank you to our 2019 Board President Lorie Wolff and our Ambassador Team for creating a community-centered, memorable event.