2015 State of the Chamber

2015 State of the Chamber

Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce Members –

The Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce will be starting its 90th year as a successful Chamber of Commerce in 2016. We are the second oldest Chamber in Summit County. Your success is our chamber’s business! We THANK YOU for your continued support!

The Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce started in 1926 with an innovative group of business leaders just like you looking to do commerce with each other. Through the years the Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce has evolved into the progressive Chamber you are a part of today! We couldn’t be more proud!
We continue to assist our business leaders in understanding the processes involved on the many levels required for business growth which includes building beneficial relationships. The programs, events and services we provide for our Chamber Members are the best a Chamber can offer! We are sure you will agree!
As you know we also serve as a visitor/relocation center and also are known as the one-stop place to call for all types of business referrals and general information.  We serve as the avenue to help our businesses network, which helps them with business introductions that help lead to business exposure and business referrals.

As we move forward 2016 we would like to reflect on what a positive year 2015 was for us.

Our membership has never been stronger with 351 members that include 80 new members and an active roster!  We are excited to keep moving forward!  Some of our new members came through member referrals and we can’t thank you enough! We really appreciate that you see the value of your membership and confidence in our Chamber to invite a fellow business to join us.  Thank you!

At the beginning of 2015 we kicked off our NEW Chamber Member Ambassador Program with a business training reception that included over 30 business leaders committed to the mission of our Chamber. Our Chamber Ambassadors assist at all our new business ribbon cuttings as well as meeting and greeting at our events. Look for the green and white ambassador tags on our business leaders.

In 2015 we cut 19 “Ribbons of Success” with Mayor Don Walters and our Chamber Ambassadors for our Chamber sponsored Ribbon Cutting program. Many of these are brand new startup businesses and we are excited that they are a part of our Chamber. They will see the support from our fellow Chamber Members and City of Cuyahoga Falls. We are so pleased with our City and Mayor’s support for these special Ribbon Cuttings! This means a lot!

Our most popular program Goldmine Referral Group has grown to 4 strong groups of successful business leaders who meet weekly and develop business relationships that help lead to business referrals.  These groups are talked about all over Northeast Ohio as well as by our local fellow Chambers of Commerce! 10 years and going strong!

Another great program in 2015 for our business leaders was the Sales & Marketing Sleuths lunch sessions which provided a roundtable open discussion to help our business leaders learn as they shared what works for them in their businesses.

Also in 2015 we started a new event called First Friday Networking ON THE GO and invited 3 other area Chambers of Commerce to participate with us monthly. (Kent Area, Twinsburg and Tallmadge Chambers of Commerce.) This one hour standing coffee and networking reception has proven to be the place to be monthly! Introductions are being made and business cards are being exchanged which is the beginning of many new business relationships between Chamber Members.
You will notice the “Chamber Trend” of Chambers of Commerce working together as we continue to lead the charge on this with our local neighboring Chambers of Commerce. This year we worked with 12 area Chambers of Commerce to bring a professional business leaders business after hours called Multi-Chamber Social Networking Business After Hours in which tickets sold out in record time with approximately 300 business leaders attending to network after work. The date in 2016 is set for April 26, 2016. Stay tuned for more details.  We also partnered with the Kent Area and Streetsboro Chambers for a 3 Chamber Mixer that was also well attended earlier this year and most recently a 3 Chamber Mixer with the North Akron and Tallmadge Chambers of Commerce that had almost 100 business leaders in attendance. We also continue to partner with Stow, Kent Area and Streetsboro Chambers of Commerce to bring you our yearly Chamber Speed Networking Session that also sells out. We have also had conversations with smaller neighboring Chambers about the potential to merge their smaller Chamber into Cuyahoga Falls Chamber. So as you see all the possibilities and opportunities that are endless to working with our local neighboring Chambers of Commerce!

In 2015 we also partnered with Western Reserve Hospital to bring our women business leaders a full day of personal and professional development called the WE Speak Empowerment Series. This will return in 2016 due to its success!

In 2016 we are also bringing back our popular Cash Mobs in which our Chamber business leaders go out and mob/support 2 different Chamber Members 2 different times per year. We have added “connections” to the event so it will now be called Cash Mobs & Connections. Stay tuned for more details.
Also in 2016 we are in process of partnering with a local fellow Chamber of Commerce (TBA) to bring a 1 day professional development session for our Chamber Member business owners. Stay tuned for details.  We are also working on a Women’s Healthy Talk Lunch Series in partnership with Western Reserve Hospital. Stay tuned for more details.
Our community and City of Cuyahoga Falls involvement will always continue for the betterment of Cuyahoga Falls, the city we all live, do business in, and love. We started an I HEART Cuyahoga Falls button campaign that showed everyone’s community spirit!  We continue to participate in the Cuyahoga Falls Memorial Day Parade in which our Chamber Award winners are driven in convertibles to be acknowledged for their successes and achievements.  We also host our Community Expo and Family Health Expos that brings out several thousand area residents to see what services are offered by our Chamber Member businesses. We are also partnered with the City of the Cuyahoga Falls for the Cuyahoga Falls Better Block program that is coming in 2016. This is a new trend in pop-up businesses that is all over many cities in the United States. We also partnered with the City of Cuyahoga Falls and Western Reserve Hospital to help promote awareness on the very successful citywide Not Me, I’m Drug Free Program.  We joined forces with the new Riverfront Concert Series IROK to offer Chamber Member business leader volunteers the opportunity to help serve beer on a Friday night in which IROK gave us a donation for the Chamber Scholarship Foundation. Thank you to our volunteers and IROK! We also partnered with local Chamber Member Metropolis Popcorn to sell popcorn for 40% of proceeds back to the Chamber Scholarship Foundation which is allowing us to add an additional $1000 scholarship that will directly benefit a Cuyahoga Falls/Silver Lake resident graduating senior. Thank you Chamber Members for purchasing popcorn!  We also thank our Chamber Members who purchased Rolling Jackpot Tickets every month at the Chamber Luncheon Meetings. ½ the proceeds went to a lucky Chamber Member and the other ½ proceeds went into the Chamber Scholarship Foundation.  We also partnered with the Cuyahoga Falls City Schools to help promote and participate in the Career Awareness Night. This is a very rewarding evening for our high school students, parents and business leaders. Our future business leaders!

We also hope you have enjoyed our brand new state of the art  and modern Chamber Website that is more user friendly and includes a new log in feature for our Chamber Members as well as easier sign-ups for Chamber events. We are using software called ChamberMaster.

So as we move into 2016 with so much going on and an active supporting Chamber of Commerce we should all be proud to call the Cuyahoga Falls Chamber OUR CHAMBER! 1926- 2016 / 90 years strong!


Laura Petrella, CEO
Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce