Weekly Feature



2017-11-08 / Business

Chamber empowers members, improves region

COLLEEN DIPIRRO
Chamber President

The Amherst Chamber of Commerce recognizes that we must engage and empower millennials if we want to remain a viable leadership organization.

Our Emerging Business Leaders is our vehicle for achieving our goals. EBL focuses on empowering younger entrepreneurs and professionals living in Western New York, encouraging its members to work together to improve our region and build long term relationships with one another, in order to serve as the next generation of community leaders.

Earlier this fall, we announced the hiring of A.J. Baynes as our president. A.J. and I have been working side by side for the past two months with outstanding results. I bring 35 years of experience to the job while A.J. brings energy, intellect and new ideas. Together, we are melding existing regional stewardship with a younger perspective.

A.J.’s ability to work with our young professionals will prove to be beneficial, not only to our organization, but to the region.

He understands their culture while providing them with the tools to grow — professionally and personally. The integration of this demographic makes the Amherst Chamber relevant and sustainable.

I will be transitioning into a new role early next year as A.J. assumes the position of president and chief executive officer.

The Amherst Chamber of Commerce is committed to maintaining our regional leadership role in economic development and public policy and I will remain as a consultant in these areas.

But, the future is now and A.J. Baynes and our Emerging Business Leaders are the future. Together, they will continue to represent the interests of the business community — young and old — and the Buffalo Niagara region will grow and prosper.

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