Category Archives: Chamber News

Marketing Wonderland – Prepping Your Business for the Holiday Season

Marketing Wonderland
Livestream Lunch and Learn
November 1, 2017
11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Albany Welcome Center – 112 N Front Street

Live Streaming

· Google: ‘Tis ​the ​Season ​for ​Site ​Optimization

· Facebook: Don’t ​forget ​your ​mittens ​and ​mobile ​phone ​to ​grow ​your ​business ​this ​holiday ​season

· Constant ​Contact: Email ​all ​the ​way ​to ​your ​best ​holiday ​season ​ever

· Square: Get ​Your ​Business ​Ready ​for ​the ​Holidays

· Lunch Included

Sign up now to reserve your seat:

Albany-Dougherty County Spring 2018 Site of Gamechangers Leadership Program

Albany, Ga. – Albany-Dougherty County leaders announced Tuesday the community’s selection as the host site for the spring 2018 class of GeorgiaForward’s Young Gamechangers, a leadership action program that makes a tangible impact in select communities by bringing young minds into the public sphere as respected idea-generators and problem-solvers.


The Albany Area Chamber of Commerce, Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Commission, City of Albany, Dougherty County and GeorgiaForward shared the news during an event that brought together community leaders at the Albany Welcome Center in downtown Albany. The spring 2018 program begins in January and concludes in June, at which time participants of the 50-member spring class will present recommendations for areas of community challenge.


“Albany-Dougherty County has experienced the positive outcomes of meaningful analysis, cross-sector partnerships, cross-region relationships and a shared vision for creating a stronger and more economically vibrant community,” said Bárbara Rivera Holmes, president and CEO of the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce, and Justin Strickland, president of the Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Commission. “We welcome Young Gamechangers to be a part of the solutions team for Albany-Dougherty County as we continue to create opportunities and leverage successes.”


“We have taken great strides within our community over the past several years to increase strategic collaboration, implement meaningful community partnerships and to better develop pathways from education to employment,” said Albany Mayor Dorothy Hubbard. “As part of our growth, we invite the fresh perspective, innovative ideas and creativity that Young Gamechangers has demonstrated.”


“Honest, unbiased self-examination of our community’s strengths and weaknesses is of critical value for Dougherty County at this time,” said Dougherty County Commission Chairman Christopher S. Cohilas. “Any community that wishes to succeed must be willing to build upon its existing assets and propose meaningful solutions to its problems. This partnership with Young Gamechangers provides that opportunity.”


GeorgiaForward is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working as a catalyst to improve Georgia through cross-sector, statewide conversations and partnerships by engaging young professionals and business, political, academic and civic leaders.


“We are looking forward to bringing Young Gamechangers to Albany-Dougherty County next year,” said Kris Vaughn, executive director of GeorgiaForward. “This program is creating tangible change in communities across our state by tapping into the wealth of creativity and energy of Georgia’s young leaders. We are proud that each of the six communities this program has worked in to date has implemented one – if not several – of the recommendations presented by the Young Gamechangers. It will be exciting to see what ideas come from the spring 2018 Young Gamechangers.”


Previous Young Gamechangers communities are Americus/Sumter County; Dublin/Laurens County; Douglasville/Douglas County; Augusta; LaGrange/Troup County; and Milledgeville/Baldwin County. The spring 2018 program is made possible in part by The Commerce Club Foundation, Central Atlanta Progress, the Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Commission, Georgia CEO and GeorgiaTrend.


To be considered for the spring 2018 class, young professionals from across Georgia with a passion for uniting the state and strengthening its communities should apply online at Applicants must be between the ages of 24-40. Ambitious minds from any professional sector will be considered. Applications must be received by midnight on October 6, 2017.



Business Expo 2017

Join us for the 2017 Business Expo on September 28, 2017 at Hilton Garden Inn Conference Center from 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. FREE with a valid business card or pay a $5 entry fee. For information on reserving a booth for you business, call the Chamber at 229-434-8700, or fill out this form and return to Mary Bickerstaff by email at or by mail at 225 W. Broad Avenue, Albany, GA 31701. All forms much be received no later than September 15.

State of the Community: Work Force Development

The Albany Area Chamber of Commerce’s State of the Community brings together community leaders for an insightful dialogue about trending topics and the issues that matter most. “Work Force Development” focuses on how the community’s educational partners are addressing 21st century needs and how multi-sector partnerships are creating opportunities for students, employers and the region.

The panelists will include Dr. Art Dunning, Albany State University; Dr. Anthony Parker, Albany Technical College; Chris Hatcher, Commodore Conyers College and Career Academy; Geoffrey Sudderth, Deerfield Windsor School; Ken Dyer, Dougherty County School System; David Clifton, Marine Corps Logistics Command.

Work Force Development is presented by Albany State University and further sponsored by Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Commission; Albany CEO; Albany Technical College; P&G; and LRA Constructors, Inc.

Ron Clark Draws Crowd to Albany Municipal Auditorium

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – Innovative educator Ron Clark took the stage at the Albany Municipal Theater Thursday, drawing crowds from across the state.

The way Clark does things is a little different, but that’s one reason he said it works so well.

“I looked at the kids and there was no passion,” Clark said. “I didn’t know what to do, but I said maybe I’ll be excited. If I’m excited, maybe they’ll be excited.”

Clark soon found out that passion would be contagious. Since that pivotal point at the beginning of his career, he’s been schooling other teachers on just how to tap into their students’ interest and help them improve academically.

“The school year is getting ready to start,” Matthew Sheets, a math teacher at Sherwood Christian Academy, said. “I’m hoping to get some new ideas, get excited and, maybe, find something I can use.”

That may very well be the exact reason educators from 85 different schools showed up for his inspirational speech and workshop at the Albany Municipal Theater Thursday.

But it wasn’t just teachers packing the room. Business professionals also took notes on Clark’s unique style of motivation and leadership.

“We’ve pretty much filled it up with business professionals and with educators,” Albany Area Chamber of Commerce President Barbara Rivera Holmes said. “So, it’s an opportunity for our own residents of Dougherty County to experience this beautiful setting, and for all our friends visiting from throughout Southwest Georgia.”

All who are stopping into town to check out his style of getting out from behind a desk, being interactive and paying special attention to every student.

“I hope that teachers will go out and realize how important they are,” Clark said. “As an educator, if you have passion and you are excited, it’s going to bleed into the hearts of the kids.”

A word of advice that will be fresh in teachers minds as school gets underway. Chamber officials said the event was nearly sold out.