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Leading Business

Economic diversification is the game today
“Economic development and diversification from gaming is critical for the Pokagon tribe, and I know it’s important for other tribes,” said Eugene Magnuson, Tribal Council treasurer. “We can’t rely on gaming forever.”

Summer signs point to a healthy Elkhart County

New Member Recruitment Benefits Current Members
New Member Recruitment Benefits Current Members

Transportation Luncheon slated for Aug. 4

Global Reach of Local Faith
There are hundreds of local businessmen who bond through their beliefs and support one another’s ventures materially. There are also several hundred pieces of equipment that are sent around the globe to support religious missionary and humanitarian work, again, based on faith. There is local faith with a global reach.

Auto Connection to Local Economy
Band instruments and recreational vehicles. Those industries have been at the core of the greater Elkhart area economy and its communities for several decades. For more than a generation, the automotive market has also been a significant element in the local economy.

Non-Profits: Gears in developing a Workforce
Non-profit organizations are not the economic engines of a community. However, they can play a major role as gears - developing a workforce, educating youth in “real-world” finances, and in easing the social challenges of many working adults - to create a better local economy.

Truth’s Marshall King to host YP Candidates Lunch
Meet the Candidate luncheon April 16 at The Lerner

500 Families - Dario Kerkez
The Chamber’s 500 Families Initiative and “500 For The Future” highlight “livability” in our community, aiming to attract and retain professionals to live and work in the Elkhart area, strengthening the strong base of community-minded leaders. UPDATE: Since January 2014 through March 2015, there have been 422 new professional households move into the Elkhart area.

Leadership Academy nears its culmination
There are 24 men and women from 19 different businesses throughout the Greater Elkhart Chamber who are enrolled in this year’s Leadership Academy.

Reach for Growth!
The future for Reach360 is a bright one because of our valued clients and we are excited to continue to be a partner and team member dedicated to our client’s success and growth!

May's President's Report
When other communities look at Elkhart County and wonder why our economy, and our Chamber, is so vibrant we can proudly reveal that we are special because we have businesses who care, organizations who care, and people who care.

Smart Moves - Managers & Leaders
Leadership and the ability to manage are not positions. One is not ranked higher than another. Both aptitudes are needed to be effective for growth in any organization. We asked several business owners, community organization leaders, educators and top-level managers to share their thoughts on the qualities a person should have in order to be a good leader or manager - and what they thought has helped them improve their leadership skills. Here are the answers from two.

Third House Meeting Opportunities
On March 6 at noon at the Elkhart Public Library, on March 21 at 10 a.m. at the Elkhart Chamber, and then again on April 18 at 10 a.m. at the Chamber, area business owners, residents, and others can meet the state lawmakers that represent our region.

Chamber President's Letter for March 2015
Elkhart has faced some interesting times. We have strong industries with strong leaders that provide jobs for direct employees and jobs for suppliers. We have other strong industries that are not related to the RV and boat industries that prove the vibrancy of our economic climate. We are fortunate to have all these industries in our community. But it takes vigilance to preserve the economic climate for these businesses – your business – to thrive.

Protect your workforce, protect your business
President's Report for February 2015 issue of LEADING BUSINESS

Robert Thatcher - ‘Engage in the economic discussion’
The Economic Development Council is populated by a very broad base of professionals representing many industries.

Hottest tickets in town!
On February 19 the Chamber will hold its 2015 Annual Meeting luncheon featuring guest speaker Andrew Berlin.

Improving our workforce: Health & Education
Health screenings & prevention with exercise, continued education and training can make a very desirable employer.

Free Professional Development for Members
Business leaders and authors such as Tony Hsieh, Malcolm Gladwell, Seth Godin, Pat Lencioni and others teach industry leading strategies for top business needs in these pre-recorded presentations.

Operational Excellence Showcase II coming soon!
The event will be held Thursday, March 5, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Matterhorn Conference Center, 2041 Cassopolis Street in Elkhart. The cost is $50 per person and the registration deadline is March 2nd.

My Council: OSHA
The OSHA Council is an organization of member companies with an interest in safety and health awareness in the workplace. Representatives meet for breakfast monthly to update themselves on regulatory changes and hear from fellow safety professionals from other companies.

This year’s Legislative Priorities
The Northern Indiana Coalition of Chambers works together on issues of importance to the Northern Indiana Region. The Six-County coalition has identified these four Regional priorities for the 2015 Legislative session:

He found his path in the City with a Heart
Chris Pottratz is an associate at the Elkhart law firm Warrick & Boyn, LLP. Chris says he is looking forward to Elkhart’s Jazz Fest, playing pick-up games of basketball and making Elkhart home.

On the Shoulders of Giants
Just a few years after Carl Greenleaf and other investors took control of the retired C.G. Conn’s musical instrument company, Greenleaf became the first president of the Elkhart Chamber of Commerce in 1919. Today, the tradition continues.

Great Customer Service
If you experience caring, competent and convenient service from a company, don’t you feel pretty good? Here is a list of observations, techniques and tactics that can move you in the right direction.

My New Hometown
The Chamber’s 500 Families Initiative and “500 For The Future” highlight our community, aiming to attract and retain professionals to live and work in the Elkhart area, strengthening the strong base of community-minded leaders here - for the next generation.

Where do you keep your money?
There are several types of institutions that offer services for businesses. But which one do you use? Where should you keep your money? The main difference between providers, they say, is customer service.

My Council: YP
I attended a Young Professionals lunch and instantly wanted to get more involved. The following month I attended the council meeting and was soon part of the executive council. I am now the Co-Chair of the YP’s along with Stacey Anderson of CAPS.

Finding some gems: Shop local, win local
Local commerce fuels the local community. That is part of the reason I will be encouraging people to participate in Small Business Saturday, which I sometimes call Shop Local Saturday.

End of Year Checklist for Businesses
Reaching the end of the calendar year awakens one’s need to organize, review goals and performance and tune in to year-to-date expenses as well as budget for 2015.

Making Elkhart HOME
Stacey and Phil Anderson are examples of the Chamber’s 500 Families vision: helping all organizations make the Greater Elkhart region attractive to long-time residents as well as new families.

JA Volunteers make time COUNT
Junior Achievement of Elkhart County is looking for adults who will help kids learn about the “real world” of economics.

Local retail forecast appears to Shine
While area retailers are “cautiously optimistic” about 2014’s fourth quarter, they are thinking positively - that it is going to “shine.”

Business and Education Winner - November 2014
Ancon Construction has received the Education Council’s quarterly award for its contribution to several local schools, including Elkhart, Concord and Goshen.

November 2014 Member News
November 2014 Member News

Ambassador of the Month
Ambassadors are a group of professional representatives, employed by Chamber Member Investors that serve as the public relations arm of the Chamber, reaching out to businesses as an extension of the Greater Elkhart Chamber.

Transportation Breakfast to Celebrate new US 31
The event will be at 8 am at the Matterhorn Conference Center, 2041 Cassopolis St. The cost is $15 for members and $25 for prospective members. Registrations can be made online at

Tomorrow’s leaders working today
The Elkhart Leadership Academy provides a venue for an in-depth understanding of community issues.

YEA! Program graduates succeeding
YEA! Program graduates succeeding - three examples.

SAFETY FIRST - the Chamber’s OSHA Council can help save you money
OSHA Council offers valuable employee training, networking for best practices and valuable contacts.

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Latest News

12/18/2017 - Reflections and Celebrations

It’s that time of year when most of us take some time to reflect on the past 365 days,

07/31/2017 - We have a phenomenal outdoor industry

As summer settles in and outdoor activities fill our calendars, it’s time to take a look at what we do around here. It’s time to re-brand our industries and communities. Stop talking about the RV industry. Start talking about the outdoor industry.

04/10/2017 - Sample the power of Lean

Do you have that nagging feeling that you’re not being as efficient at work as you could be?

04/03/2017 - Young entrepreneurs take the stage

It was great fun to witness the launch of three new businesses last Thursday evening.

03/27/2017 - Things grow when the climate is right

Last week I attended two events celebrating new, large, facilities

03/20/2017 - Excitement Sprouting

After a strange stretch of weather, today is the official start of Spring

03/13/2017 - Working for workers

We have a great economy, making great products, providing great opportunities.

03/06/2017 - Legislative halfway point, still time for you

The legislature has reached the halfway point. Bills have switched houses.

02/27/2017 - 2016 was celebrated. 2017 taking off strong.

Wasn’t that a fantastic Annual Meeting celebration last Friday? At least 500 of you were there.

02/20/2017 - Another year done, another year coming

We hope you have your ticket for our Annual Meeting on Friday.

02/13/2017 - Bringing the legislature to you, and you to the legislature

Last Friday, we hosted our second Third House town hall meeting of the year.

02/03/2017 - Chamber announces legislative positions

The Board of Directors for the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce has identified these Regional priorities for the 2017 Legislative session:

01/30/2017 - The road to roads

Our Chamber has advocated for long-term, dedicated highway funding for a long time.

01/23/2017 - Our modern Chamber will look like a modern Chamber

As you know we have a very effecting and influential Chamber of Commerce.

01/16/2017 - New year = new legislature

The year is still early enough that we are still saying “happy new year” to each other.

01/09/2017 - Not done yet

Faster and safer, but not fast enough or safe enough.

01/03/2017 - Interns help you and the community

Right now, our companies are struggling to find skilled workers

12/19/2016 - Our volunteers are great

Last week, I thanked our outgoing and incoming members of our Board of Directors.

12/12/2016 - Farewell and Welcome

Later this week, we will be transitioning our Board of Directors.

11/28/2016 - Overtime rule blocked

A federal judge blocked the new overtime rule that was set to take effect December 1.

05/09/2016 - Leaders never really graduate

Businesses, and communities for that matter, are looking for leaders

04/18/2016 - A rose by any other name

We are proud to announce that your Chamber is the home of the Center for Business Excellence. The Center will help large and small companies improve their process and reduce waste

04/05/2016 - Catalytic Leadership Starts Here

It is a challenge to find a leader. It is a challenge to BE a leader.

04/04/2016 - Elkhart Leadership Academy - Guiding Our Future Leaders

For almost 30 years, the Elkhart Leadership Academy has been guiding future community leaders.

04/02/2016 - Students Complete 2016 Young Entrepreneurs Academy

The Elkhart Chamber Young Entrepreneurs Academy will graduate its 5th class of students in May, a total of over 60 graduates since the program began in 2012.

04/01/2016 - Ambassador of the Month

Anji Metzler, First Call Staffing

04/01/2016 - Ambassador of the Month

Hugh Johnson, J2 Marketing, LLC

02/01/2016 - Working Together to Transform our Region

Regional Cities and Vibrant Communities are putting the Elkhart area at the forefront of new economic development

01/29/2016 - Ambassador of the Month

Lori Swihart, WSBT Radio Group

12/01/2015 - A STRONG year for our CHAMBER and our COMMUNITY

2015 was an active year in the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce.

12/01/2015 - Downtown Elkhart

Thanks to SoMa, downtown Elkhart became a more attractive place in 2015 with new features that guide visitors to restaurants, attractions and parking and add colorful flair in unexpected spots.

12/01/2015 - Transportation

The Chamber has long been recognized as a transportation advocate. These key projects will be completed in 2015.

12/01/2015 - Indiana Toll Road Travel Plaza Master Plan focus of Breakfast

The Indiana Toll Road spans 157 miles across Northern Indiana from Ohio to the Illinois state line and is a major economic corridor.

12/01/2015 - Business and Education Partnership Award Given to Centier Bank

The Greater Elkhart Chamber Education/Career Development Council has presented their 3rd Quarter Business and Education Partnership Award to Centier Bank.

12/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Evelyn Johnston, Friends & Neighbors Real Estate Services

11/09/2015 - Non-Profit agencies impacted by local purchases

When local businesses and their employees contribute to local non-profit organizations, everyone wins.

11/05/2015 - The Impact Beyond the Purchase

Beyond every action, every single dollar spent, there is a ripple effect.

11/04/2015 - Not what you buy, but where

When you buy from a local company, you are supporting the employees who live in your community.

11/02/2015 - Business and Education Partnership Award Given to Elkhart Public Library

The Greater Elkhart Chamber Education/Career Development Council has presented their 2nd Quarter Business and Education Partnership Award to the Elkhart Public Library.

11/02/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Spherion Staffing, Hugh Johnson

11/02/2015 - Business and Education Partnership Award Given to Elkhart Public Library

Elkhart Public Library given Business and Education Partnership Award

10/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Beacon Consulting, Tom Miller

09/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Loretta Salchert, Ribbon of Hope

08/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Shelly Crawford, INOVA Federal Credit Union

07/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Michael Wolff, Life Style Photography

06/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month


05/27/2015 - Education Council looks for partners in welcoming new educators

Sponsorships are needed for the canvas gift bags and items to fill the bags.

05/01/2015 - Help for your business

Business resources available with NCI, SCORE, SBDC, & EDC.

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