As our nation and local economy faced the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis, the staff and Board of the Rancho Mirage Chamber of Commerce were at the forefront from the outset as a strong voice, support and aid. Now, they are working with members and other partners toward recovery and a full comeback.
The Chamber has marshalled all its resources to help by informing companies and keeping paychecks flowing to workers and families, mobilizing the business community to combat the pandemic, and helping companies prepare for a safe, successful and sustainable economic reopening.
The multi-year recovery effort is ongoing and touches every aspect of economic development, including but not limited to small business aid and support, getting people back to work safely and connecting employers to employees, marketing businesses to consumers to drive business, making sure our community has stores available and safely open, enabling positive economic impact and positivity, and hope and encouragement: never underestimate a genuinely optimistic leader. As Katie Stice, President and CEO of the Chamber, states, “It felt good to lead these efforts and get creative in problem solving – each day was a different and new opportunity to serve.
Forming the Business Recovery Alliance gave Valley Chambers and associations an opportunity to work together, and the campaigns were fun; from ‘Kind Coachella Valley’ to ‘Keep the Cheer Here’ through the holidays to ‘Shop Local/Shop Small.’ We kept the awareness messaging front and center, and the response is still positive to this day! Sometimes we did things that just made people feel good during very sad times. I’m proud of the unity and positive leadership of our Board of Directors and look forward to continued service and success for our incredible community!”
The Rancho Mirage Chamber of Commerce is committed to repairing the damage that was done to the local economy. Their priorities cover four broad categories: residents and visitors/Snowbirds’ willingness to spend in the Coachella Valley; state and government programs and loans; business bankruptcies, investments, financing and suppliers; and lost human capital. Stice says, “We are in a unique position at the Chamber as we work directly with three major community of clarity in the chaos of the pandemic and, through the Board’s support, brought together resources and ideas and took action straight away. These times have been trying and exhausting, as there is great responsibility in the Chamber’s role during crisis and through recovery. But when one is in tune with their community – the pathways become clear.”
As a not-for-profit membership organization, the Rancho Mirage Chamber is a bridge that links businesses and residents together with innovative programs that strengthen economic vitality, business success, job creation and quality of life. The Chamber represents all member businesses by advocating for policies that foster a positive business climate. The Chamber also supports innovative ideas to educate, attract and retain a high-quality workforce. Nate Lewis, Chairman of the Chamber’s board, explains, “Most people look at how much work this boutique chamber produces, and I chalk it up to a professional Board of Directors made up of Valley leaders, a supportive and savvy city partnership, an experienced staff with over 36 years in the Chamber industry and an enthusiastic business community
ready for progress.”
On behalf of the 430 members and more than 15,000 employees that comprise the Rancho Mirage Chamber of Commerce, the Advocacy Committee advocates for reasonable, well researched and debated legislation that is favorable to businesses; complements economic development initiatives; encourages Free Enterprise; and continues to elevate the business competitiveness of the Rancho Mirage area. Katie Stice enthusiastically declares, “If I could do more, I would! Helping this community is a passion of mine. It is rewarding and I learn more each day.”