Chairman’s Message: Strategic Partnerships are Key to Bettering Businesses & Our Community
Strategic partnerships are crucial to a successful business. As defined, strategic partnerships are relationships between businesses, and typically it is for the betterment of both entities. And that is not any different for chambers of commerce as they strive to be successful. The Destin Chamber has invaluable partnerships with our members and state, local and county governmental entities. By cultivating these relationships, we all benefit. Achieving success and staying informed is how these strategic partnerships have helped guide the Chamber Board and staff in decisions we make to move our Chamber forward.
The Chamber Board has hosted numerous community leaders during board meetings, committee meetings and at the Chamber Business Before Hours events. Destin Mayor Gary Jarvis spoke to the Chamber Board about being an advocate for the City and using our voice on behalf of our members to speak about issues that affect the Destin business community. Okaloosa County School Superintendent Marcus Chambers spoke to the Board recently about the need for partnerships between businesses and our schools. Career tech programs are at the forefront of educators’ minds, and they recognize the need to educate students to fill these jobs in our community. Chambers also spoke about an environment of accountability he is creating at the school district. Safety was another topic of our conversation during our meeting and having the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Department represented on our Board is crucial to understanding the impacts on our community.
Tourism, a large economic driver of our community, is an area we are focused on and have hosted the Okaloosa County Tourist Development Director Jennifer Adams and Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association Regional Director Nick Lowe to educate our members on issues and initiatives during the Tourism Committee meetings.
During last month’s Chamber Business Before Hours, Dr. Jerry Parrish, Chief Economist and Director of Research of the Florida Chamber Foundation, was the guest speaker. Dr. Parrish shared that positive economic development plus pro-business legislation together equal a good economy for all and a strong community. He cited the need to keep these in mind and be proactive with your local state legislators on issues that impact your community. Again, another great strategic partner of the Destin Chamber. This partnership is strong because of the great work and commitment by our Chamber’s President & CEO Shane Moody. Shane has cultivated a strong and positive relationship with the Florida Chamber that benefits the Destin Chamber and our members.
As we continue to strengthen and grow our Chamber, we ask ourselves as a Board, what strategic partnerships do we need to focus on to meet our goals? As a Destin business owner or community member, what strategic partnerships do you need to build to increase your revenue, engage customers or better our community?
Julie Cotton, 2019 Destin Chamber Chairman
Northwest Florida State College