PORT CHESTER, N.Y. -- Representatives from nearly a dozen local Chamber of Commerce groups met at a Chamber Summit Meeting, sponsored by State Sen. George Latimer (D-Rye), at the Port Chester Senior Center on Sept. 29.
The attendees came from communities as diverse as Armonk and Yonkers to exchange ideas on growing business in their local areas, and share strategies for attracting membership and motivating residents to "Buy Local."
"This was an opportunity for people to hear what is happening in neighboring communities, and to spark ideas that may be helpful in their own area," said Latimer.
Chambers that participated were Armonk, Bronxville, Larchmont, Mamaroneck, New Rochelle, Pelham, Port Chester-Rye Brook, Rye and Yonkers.
John Ravitz, executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Business Council of Westchester, was the keynote speaker, and he touched on issues of governmental importance, such as the minimum wage--which would affect business.
He outlined the Business Council's efforts to positively impact local businesses with their advocacy agenda and business development initiatives, such as an upcoming trip to Cuba.
Assembly Members David Buchwald (D-White Plains) and Shelley Mayer (D-Yonkers) also spoke to the group, as did County Legislator Catherine Parker (D-7th District).
Margaret Ricketts, president of the Rye Chamber of Commerce, and Carpet Trends in Rye, noted that "it was very helpful to bring together people from other areas to share their experiences. We're all running our own businesses, and we don't always have the time to do this".
Steve Josephson, president of the Mamaroneck Chamber of Commerce, and owner of the Toy Box in Mamaroneck, said, "I captured a lot of good suggestions from other chambers" at the program.
Latimer indicated his office would prepare an on-line Chamber Directory of contacts to be shared among the local Chambers, as a follow-up to the event. "This will help people keep in touch on an on-going basis," Latimer concluded.