Annual Report

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2020-2021 Annual Report

Mission Statement The White County Chamber of Commerce’s mission is to enhance the economic vitality and quality of life in White County.

Vision Statement To help every business to flourish and grow, encourage new and quality industry to our community and to provides jobs for everyone to work.

Values Statement We will act as trustworthy and responsible stewards of the Chamber’s funds, seeking to direct resources with wisdom and integrity. We will treat all relationships with honesty, respect and fairness.


We will be actively involved in our community because we care and will be leaders in identifying and addressing issues of community and regional concern. We will be passionate about providing businesses with the tools they need to grow and prosper. We will be open to new ideas and willing to consider change. We will always listen and work with others as a team in order to enable our success and fulfill our mission.

2020-2021 Highlights Public Affairs •

Hosted in-person tours with Congressman Collins, Congressman Clyde, and Government officials

Co-hosted advocacy call with Sen. Perdue, Sen. Loeffler, SBA and Federal Reserve

Public Policy meeting with Governor Kemp Staff,

Advocacy for and updates for Landlords and employers

Hosted Insurance Commissioner—John King

Economic Development •

Support White County Economic Development Authority Strategic Economic Development Plan.

Updated web access to available economic development data to include available commercial sites, traffic counts , labor market information and projected population growth.

Support Downtown Cleveland to support retail and services in the Cleveland market

Story ideas submitted by Chamber staff published by travel writers, and magazine publishers.

Conducted Business Retention and Expansion Surveys with regional employers and economic drivers Regional Workforce Development .

Partnered with White County School System, Mtn. Education, North GA Tech, Truett, Solutions for the 9th District, UNG on workforce development.

Fostered relationships between local employers and White County School System.

Assisted business with SBA Payroll Protection application & forgiveness

Enriched jobs boards to help reconnect employers & employees

Assisted businesses with supply chain and logistic issues.

Special Events •

AgriFest is a collaborative effort between the Chamber, Our Agribusinesses and the City of Cleveland to offer a fall festival in Freedom Park. Featured vendors, farmers market, petting zoo and Cleveland Crafts available for sale.

Downtown events helped promote the downtown Cleveland area.

22nd Annual Clergy Appreciation Breakfast held virtually honor over 100 pastors and clergy in our community.

The Mountains Will Be Here When You Are Ready campaign encouraging people to travel safely to White County helped tourism businesses overcome an almost 2 month shutdown.

Your Big Day Can’t Wait Campaign

Christmas in the Mountains Parade streamed live and view by over 16,000 people.

Education •

Hosted Digital Media Group Classes, such as Quickbooks training, and one-on-one sessions for members to better use new Chamber website

Provided 2 $500 Scholarships to White County High School Graduates

Hosted One-on-one Entrepreneur training sessions in partnership with UGA Small Business Development Center.

Educated the public on the value of Agriculture in our community during Farm City Week.

Funded the White County Chamber of Commerce Foundation for Education to offer opportunities in education for early childhood, elementary, high school, post secondary, entrepreneur academy and leadership.

Held virtual meetings for 7 industry sectors to help business, grow, & stabilize essential businesses & open new businesses.

Conducted a Leadership Economic Development training for 8 White County business leaders covering agriculture, manufacturing , tourism, consensus building downtown development.

Investor Relations •

26 New Members for the year

Retention of existing members at 89%

Survey of the Investors to learn about their business challenges

Featured 24 exemplary businesses as Investors of the Month for exceptional customer service, support of the Chamber and volunteerism in the community at large

5 Networking events to help Investors meet their next customer. Focus on regional markets and partnerships to grow your influence

Communications and Publications •

Hosted over 50 virtual sessions to help businesses navigate Executive Orders by Governor Kemp.

Monthly Chamber Advocate newsletters printed in the White County News

Weekly ChamberGram e-news delivered to subscribed with targeting information you can use TODAY to grow your business

Hot Deals, Job Postings and Event Listings pushed out to all social media including Facebook, twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, etc.

Open Air Oktoberfest Marketing: 36.5k people reached in the Atlanta market. Three Media tours & 6 travel articles.

On average, 51,000 social media followers find information about the White County Area daily on Chamber platforms featuring Outdoor Adventure, Business Development, Wedding Planning, and Tourism.

The White County Chamber of Commerce’s Mission is to enhance the economic vitality and quality of life in White County.

2021-2022 Program of Work Grow Jobs & Investments •

Business retention and expansion services

Support county wide comprehensive plan

Tourism product development

Strengthen Quality of Place

Commercial retail development

• •

Helps service providers expand broadband Choice in Housing Initiative Talent Development

Public Affairs •

Helps curb cost of raw materials

Assist in streamlining supply chain

Facilitate discussion on redistricting

Minimize red tape to encourage cottage industry

Candidate Forums for Cleveland, Helen & County elections

Support infrastructure expansion: Water Sewer, Inland Port Access and Broadband

Apprenticeship programs

Industry bootcamps

Connecting business to higher education

Job fairs

Relocation Assistance

Our Vision:

Chamber Staff Beth Truelove President Briana Cantrell Communications Coordinator Joseph Kahle Intern


Out-Going Directors Chuck Edwards Lorie Crumley

2021-2022 Board of Directors Jason Hogan, Chairman Todd Marks, Past Chair Ward Gann, Incoming Chair Donald Harris, Treasurer

Tom O’Bryant,

Blake Boggs,

City of Cleveland

Alco Realty

Brent Edwards,

Shanda Ginn,

Georgia Power

Cleveland Academy

John Sell,

Carly Adams,

White County Econom-

Finns on Main

ic Development

Carol Jackson,

Kathy London,

North Georgia

White County High

Technical College

School 122 North Main Street Cleveland, GA 30528 706.865.5356