Message from the President | January 2019

President/CEO A.J. Baynes
President/CEO A.J. Baynes

Welcome 2019!  In a few weeks, I will celebrate my first year as President/CEO of the Amherst Chamber of Commerce, and I couldn’t be prouder of all we accomplished so far.

The Chamber is coming into the new year with new investors, new community partners, new members, new events and a continued focus on improving the business climate in our region.

This year is bringing some leadership changes in government on both the state and federal levels, and the Chamber is committed more than ever to making sure we are creating an environment where the business community can thrive.

We are encouraging our members to be engaged in the issues that affect their businesses and are using the hashtag #StepUp at our Annual Luncheon on January 25th when we will officially lay out our 2019 Public Policy Agenda. This will outline the issues the Chamber supports in the coming year that help keep our economy growing and your businesses prosperous.

The Chamber has also enlisted several elected officials, asking them to be a part of our #StepUp campaign.

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz joined State Senator Chris Jacobs, State Senator Tim Kennedy, State Senator Michael Ranzenhofer, Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples, Erie County Legislator Ed Rath and Buffalo Common Councilman Joel Feroleto for our #StepUp video courtesy of Chamber member Nickel City Graphics. The video will be featured at our Annual Luncheon.

County Executive Poloncarz also joined us for our Tuesday Talk video interview, explaining how the county can help businesses break through the bureaucratic red tape. Be sure to check it out in this newsletter or on our YouTube page here.

The Luncheon will also feature the installation of the Chamber’s 2019 Board of Directors by Congressman Brian Higgins and Amherst Supervisor Brian Kulpa will present the State of the Town after his first year in office.

The Annual Luncheon is promising to be enlightening. We hope you will join us by registering here.

The Chamber is thrilled to cut the ribbon at 1pm today for another small business, the new Goldfish Swim School at 7950 Transit Road in Williamsville, and members are welcome to join us. Also, be sure to register here for our Business After Hours at The Screening Room on January 15th and register here for the Business After Hours at Fresh Catch Poke on February 19th. These are great opportunities to network and meet new members.

Thank you to all those who helped make our blood drive on December 14th with Chamber member Unyts a great success. We collected several pints of lifesaving blood that were in high demand over the holiday season. It was great seeing some Chamber members rolling up their sleeves!  We also had a great turnout at Brian Michael’s Jewelers on the 18th for Business After Hours, adding a little extra sparkle to the holiday!

Our calendar is filling up quickly, so check out our website or follow us on social media to stay up on the events. Let’s make 2019 the best yet, and remember, my door is always open.