The Greater Pocono Chamber of Commerce is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. The Chamber represents over 1,200 members and is regarded as “The Voice of Business since 1910.”
By and large, the Chamber’s core purposes are to
- Create a strong and vibrant local economy
- Promote the community
- Provide networking and contact opportunities for its members
- Represent the interests of business with government
- Offer the members effective services and cost-saving benefits
The Greater Pocono Chamber of Commerce is regarded as a grass-roots business organization located at 556 Main Street, Stroudsburg, PA. The Chamber is looked upon as being a center of learning by offering diverse business seminars and workshops, and also as a venue of human interaction with an array of seventeen committees and task forces. Additionally, the Chamber is highly regarded as the business leader in the community by acting as the catalyst for economic growth, vitality, and job creation/retention in the Pocono region.
During the past decade, the Greater Pocono Chamber of Commerce has accomplished several significant objectives that have had an affirmative and measurable impact on the local and regional economy. Some of these accomplishments are as follows:
- Counseled over 500 new business start-ups
- Significantly increased membership cost-savings benefits
- Coordinated the acquisition and/or merger for 90 businesses
- Helped create and retain several thousand jobs
- Secured $13 million for business financing
- Initiated a business resource center to assist new and existing local businesses
- Established Leadership Pocono, Inc. as a wholly owned 501 ( c) (3) subsidiary of the Chamber
- Spearheaded a regional alliance that helped to retain Monroe County’s Historical Underutilized Business Zone status that retained hundreds of jobs
- Facilitated business education programs in conjunction with local universities, colleges, technical and secondary schools
- Revived the Safe I80 Task Force
- Created new committees such as; Energy, Manufactures, and Sportsman
- Provides affordable advertising for the members
- Provides group benefits such as health insurance, energy cost-saving programs, education programs, networking opportunities, member to member discount programs, and referrals services
- Yearly membership listing in the Chamber’s Directory and Buyer’s Guide with a 10,000 distribution throughout the region
- Facilitate a yearly, two-day Business Expo held at East Stroudsburg University
- Created an infrastructure task force to promote the necessary infrastructure needed for business growth and expansion
- Serve as a powerful and frontline legislative advocate for improving the business climate in the Pocono region
In addition, the Chamber presents several awards and recognitions that honor businesses and individuals within Monroe County. They are The Bizzy Awards, The Healthy Workplace Awards, Save Our Planet Awards, Youth Appreciation Recognitions, Career Fest, The Athena Award, The Citizen of the Year Award, The Humanitarian of the Year Award, The Business Person of the Year Award, The Frank Schoelch Community Commitment Award, and the Chairman’s Business Award.
The Monroe County Board of Commissioners is invited each year by the Chamber’s Government Affairs Committee to give a “Report to Business” on County issues, budgets, and policies.
In conclusion, The Greater Pocono Chamber of Commerce for the past 100 years has been doing the things that most people think just happens.
Being a member of the Chamber reflects your credibility and signifies that you and your business belong to the community. The Chamber is wholly committed to its members and refers only Chamber members to customer inquire. The Chamber connects members to members and to the community. As a member, you are associated with the most important and influential business leaders in the community.
The value, the vibrance, the friendship, and the collaboration are the essence of being a member of the Greater Pocono Chamber of Commerce.
Robert P. Phillips, IOM