By all measures, the 2017 Canada Summer Games lived up to its billing as the hottest summer in half a century. Records were broken. Visitors to our city experienced first-hand the passion and strength of our community.
To everyone involved with the Games: you did Winnipeg proud.
It was an equally hot year for your Winnipeg Chamber. There wasn’t a podium, but there were plenty of golden moments.
In June 2017, the Chamber set a new high-water mark for membership: 2,100 and growing. On a per capita basis, your Winnipeg Chamber is now among the largest in Canada.
This record membership level is a natural outcome of a year full of achievements. Small business support took a major step forward at The Chamber through our Small Business Forums, which leverage our members’ expertise to help other members enhance their businesses. A new dedicated social media community has extended this vital networking to small business leaders unable to physically attend our events – part of our efforts to increase the ‘stay at home’ value of Chamber membership.
From City Hall to Parliament Hill, your Chamber’s impact was felt far and wide. Pooled registered pension plans, minimum wage and union certification legislation; a new Chamber Permits Resource Desk to assist you with city permit challenges; and, a Winnipeg Chamber led effort to maintain the federal tax exemption on health and dental benefits in Ottawa: the list goes on and on…
A growing and effective Chamber is only possible through the combined strength of volunteers, staff and our community partners. One of the great privileges of my role is being able to thank them.
My deep appreciation goes to our Chair, Wadood Ibrahim, and the entire Board of Directors. Managing a leadership transition is not easy under any circumstances. Your vision, guidance and support were instrumental in taking the Chamber to the next level and setting the compass for a bright future. The passion and talent around the Board table is why that future is now.
To the team of dedicated women and men I have the pleasure of calling colleagues: thank you for bringing your best to the Chamber. From the front desk to the back office, you inspire me by always eagerly asking “what’s next?”, then amaze me with your commitment to the answer.
To the backbone of our team – our members and volunteers – words fall short of expressing our gratitude. Actions will have to do.
I believe that where a person spends their time and money is the truest indication of their priorities. Based on the past 12 months and more, you’ve made your Chamber a priority. In the months and years ahead, our commitment to you is simple: we’ll honour that investment by making you, your business and our community our highest priority.