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Durango Chamber of Commerce: A catalyst for local business growth and advocacy

Kim Oyler

Durango is fortunate to have many valuable organizations working together to support local business, and today, I’d like to shine a spotlight on the Durango Chamber of Commerce and some of its contributions to our business community.

The mission of the Chamber is to be an advocate and resource for local business, fostering economic growth, community development and empowering local businesses. To do this, the Chamber provides an array of resources and tools designed to aid business development, from innovative marketing strategies to essential HR workshops. Each month, our Lunch & Learn sessions dive into diverse topics, and in the coming months, our sessions will focus on enhancing customer service, crafting engaging videos, mastering social media, leveraging AI and using Canva. These workshops are designed to equip our members with the knowledge and skills they need to thrive in the marketplace.

For small businesses that can’t always keep up with the ever-changing landscape of human resources, the Chamber helps to bridge the gap. Working in collaboration with the Durango Area Association of HR Managers, the Chamber is hosting invaluable workshops designed to keep small businesses updated. This August, employment law specialist Michael Santo will lead a session about the latest labor law updates, ensuring our local businesses remain compliant and competitive.

The Chamber’s mission extends beyond mere support; it is deeply committed to fostering a business-friendly environment through robust advocacy efforts. We champion the interests of local businesses at the local, state and national levels, advocating for policies that support economic growth while opposing legislation that could harm the business climate. This advocacy is crucial, as it ensures that the voices of local businesses are heard and considered throughout the public policy process.

To keep our community informed about legislative and policy developments and their implications for local businesses, the Durango Chamber is hosting an “Eggs and Issues Legislative Wrap-Up” event on June 27, and we invite you to attend. This event is a prime opportunity for business owners and community members to stay current on issues at the state level. Attendees will hear directly from the Colorado Competitive Council – C3 – a staunch pro-business advocate. This organization collaborates with businesses, chambers and economic development corporations throughout Colorado, leveraging a team of experts with in-depth knowledge of critical business issues and influence at the state Capitol.

During the June 27 event, C3 Executive Director Rachel Beck and lobbyist Travis Berry will share their insights and advocacy efforts from the recent legislative session. They will provide updates on which bills passed, which failed and which may resurface next session, specifically focusing on issues impacting business and southwest Colorado. This session is essential for anyone who wants to understand the legislative landscape and its potential impact on their business.

Altogether, the Chamber’s initiatives foster a thriving business climate, which enhances quality of life, and ensures a thriving community. We proudly serve as a big voice for small business, acting as a catalyst, connector, convener and champion for our members and the broader community.

For more information about the Chamber, our activities and events, visit DurangoBusiness.org.

Kim Oyler is the interim CEO of Durango Chamber of Commerce.