Gateway to Connection
The Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce is a business organization offering business programs, business services, and business networking events.
The organization consists of businesses and individuals working together to build a healthy economy and to improve the quality of life in Cuyahoga Falls.
The Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce began in the fall of 1926 by a group of businessmen and property owners. At the Annual Meeting of the Falls Civic Association, a committee of 15 was appointed for the purpose of organizing a Chamber of Commerce. The first meeting was held at the City Hall on November 24, 1926, followed by a membership campaign in January 1927.
We stand strong with more than 300 business members who belong and support the Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce.
By 1981, membership had grown to almost 100. With the passage of the Cuyahoga Falls – Northampton Township merger in November of 1985, the Northampton Chamber of Commerce was disbanded and absorbed into the ranks of the CFCC.
For nearly three decades, the ARDB had nurtured and guided the CFCC, encouraging its development as an independent organization with its own character and identity. By March of 1986, the CFCC had experienced significant growth, gathering strength through increased membership, capable leadership, and a broader base of influence. At a special meeting on March 24, the CFCC’s Board of Directors approved a proposal of the Executive Committee that the CFCC established a local office within the city limits of Cuyahoga Falls on or about May 1, 1986, and further, that the CFCC become functionally and financially independent and separate from the ARDB effective January 1, 1987.
On April 23, 1986, the membership cast a unanimous vote for independence. Office space was secured at 2675 Oakwood Drive in the Falls, and the CFCC embarked on a membership campaign that brought 60 new members in as many days. New articles of incorporation were filed with the State on June 18, 1986, paving the way for independence in 1987.
During the 1960s and 1970s, the organization became actively involved in local projects – the expressway, school bond, and tax levies; library expansion, traffic control, municipal finance, industrial expansion, and other issues facing the Cuyahoga Falls community.
The Akron Area Chamber of Commerce merged with the Area Progress Board in 1975 from what is now known as the Akron Regional Development Board (ARDB), and the CFCC’s affiliation continued. At that time, there were 74 active CFCC members.
In July of 1941, however, an organization called the Cuyahoga Falls Merchants and Manufacturers Association was formed; its goals and objectives were similar to those established by the chamber in 1927. Nearly, a decade later, an affidavit was filed with the State by a “former chamber member” which said, in part, “The Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce has been defunct and completely out of existence for many years and is at present out of existence.” On February 14, 1950, the Cuyahoga Falls Merchants and Manufacturers Association filed an amendment to their articles of incorporation, changing their name to the Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce.
In 1958, the CFCC affiliated with the Akron Area Chamber of Commerce.
As early as 1926, a group of local residents known as the Falls Civic Association recognized the need for an organization that could address the concerns of the Cuyahoga Falls business community and began to lay the groundwork for the city’s first “chamber of commerce”. A committee was selected C. E. Motz, chairman, D. D. Burgan, secretary, A. E. Ranney, H. J. Wade, F. W. Orth, H.C. Piehl, L.M. Green, J.V. O’Connor; J. Bagley, George Elliott, C.M. Tyler, and L. P. Bradrick. A membership campaign in early 1927 headed up by John Swan and E.E. Bair, drew nearly 200 members (business and property owners), and on February 17, 1927, the Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce was born. A constitution was adopted, and directors were elected: R. C. Curst, B. w. Bierce, Sol Levinson, W. H. Richardson, W. Schnabel, J. V. O’Connor, J. Bagley, L. Green, F. W. Orth, A. E. Ranney, P. C. Albertson, C. E. Motz, D. D. Burgan, George Elliott, and Max Read. The committee held a number of meetings in November and December. A 15 member Advisory Committee governed the organization. Russell Frey was employed as the chamber’s first executive secretary.
Little is known about the chamber’s activity during the 1930s.