Troy Chamber of Commerce recaps 2022


TROY — The city of Troy’s Chamber of Commerce held its annual State of the Chamber event Thursday morning for members to learn about its efforts over the previous year.

Executive Director Kathi Roetter, member since 2014, presented the State of the Chamber to guests. Roetter’s main points revolved around how the Chamber has been a catalyst for business growth, a convener of business and community leaders and a champion for Troy.

As a catalyst for business growth, the chamber offers multiple options for small business in Troy to save money. A few of the programs mentioned by Roetter include: health insurance, workers compensation discounts, energy discount programs and a certificate of origin program. Lastly, the chamber also offers members use of its board room for businesses to hold meetings and get a slight change in scenery.

“That’s just the surface area of what we offer. So if you’re not aware of some of these benefits, I think a lot of times when people hear “chamber” they talk about networking and they talk about events like the what we’re at today or our Leadership Troy program … we also have all these money saving programs too so, if you’re not aware of those please make sure to connect with Shelby and we’ll get you connected to those programs,” said Roetter.

The chamber also acts as an advocate for local small businesses, which is what chambers were originally formed for. In 2022, the Troy Chamber of Commerce signed onto multiple bills to benefit the small businesses of Troy. The chamber signed on to the Ohio License Reciprocity Bill, the National Tele-Medicine legislation and Independent Contractor legislation. The chamber also hosted business roundtable discussions to hear concerns and complications from local businesses about obstacles they have faced while doing business in Troy. As a result of the chamber’s roundtable discussions, a “How to do Business Guide” is in the works to help small business owners navigate some of the more intricate rules to doing business in Troy.

“One of the things that we’ve really found in the last two years is that we have small businesses that have been successful elsewhere so they’re choosing Troy to expand, but our rules are a little different. So we want to make sure that it’s really clear, so that’s one of the things we’ve been working on as well. That will be launched here in the beginning of the year,” said Roetter.

One of the most noticeable events done by the chamber are ribbon cuttings done by the chamber’s Ambassador Team. The Ambassador Team consists of 25 chamber members who volunteer to welcome new businesses and celebrate with the old businesses in Troy. Ribbon cuttings are done for new business openings, relocations or businesses celebrating milestones. The Ambassador Team did 40 ribbon cuttings in 2022 and have a goal to complete 50 in 2023.

Another way the chamber acts as a catalyst for businesses in Troy is by promoting chamber member businesses and non-profits. The chamber promotes these local businesses and organizations through their website, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok pages. Their website hosts a business directory for the community to use and see what is new in Troy. One of the biggest promotions on social media is the chamber’s member of the week promotions on Facebook and Instagram.

The chamber is constantly promoting Troy and its businesses to the surrounding region. According to Roetter it is important that the Troy Chamber of Commerce informs non-locals and visitors of the numerous local shops, boutiques, restaurants, trails and parks in Troy. The chamber promotes through paid social media advertisements, which chamber members can pay for business-specific advertisements to be on the chamber’s social media.

The chamber also highlights Troy’s workforce and employment opportunities with YouTube videos that each focus on different careers in Troy. They have partnered with Troy City Schools for Career Education since 2013, but COVID-19 changed their partnership. Using YouTube to promote the different careers available in Troy helped the chamber maintain the Career Education partnership with TCS while also giving the chamber a way to reach the community to inform them about the new businesses and industries.

Looking to the future, the Troy Chamber of Commerce is looking to expand its leadership programs by creating a two day intensive leadership training program to increase participation and to restart the leadership alumni program. The leadership alumni program would help the alumni continue their leadership experience and education.

The year 2023 will also see some organizational realignment in Troy. Many people and businesses find the multiple chamber agencies to be confusing. One of the biggest changes in the new year will be the dissolution of the Troy Strawberry Festival as a standalone organization. The festival is not going away. According to Roetter, it did not make sense for the festival to be its own standalone non-profit organization. The Troy Strawberry Festival is now an event under the Chamber of Commerce and the festival board is now going to be a steering committee under the chamber.

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