Results: Chambers of Commerce

Project Updates

Rapid City Chamber of Commerce optimistic about growth at annual meeting

Big news from the Rapid City Area Chamber of Commerce as they celebrated the business community and recent growth at their 132nd annual meeting. Elevate Rapid City, a 5-year strategic plan to create 4,800 high-paying jobs is also powering along. So far, Elevate has shattered its fundraising goal of $4.25 million with over $7 million in pledges.

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Project Updates

Chamber launches campaign

The Cleveland/Bradley County (TN) Chamber of Commerce announced Tuesday that it had raised 65 percent of its $1.6 million goal during its campaign to raise funds to promote its workforce and economic development plan. Campaign funds will promote workforce development, entrepreneurial development, a buy local campaign, tourism-based economic development, Chamber facility, website and equipment upgrades and economic and community development support.

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General Client News

KS Chamber Hosts Forums for Vision 2025

Southeast Kansas will play host to forums aimed at getting public input for the state's strategic plan. The Kansas Chamber is hosting its second round of regional forums to get feedback for Vision 2025, an action plan for the state. Officials hope the plan will help grow the state's talent supply, advance competitiveness, expand innovation and entrepreneurship and improve business infrastructure.

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New Leaders/Jobs

Rumler to lead Quad Cities Chamber

Quad-Cities native Paul Rumler has been named the new president/CEO of the Quad Cities Chamber, effective April 16. "Paul has an established track record demonstrating forward-thinking and collaborative leadership," said Pat Eikenberry, chair of the Quad Cities Chamber Board of Directors and a member of the CEO Search task force. "There is strong positive momentum in the Quad-Cities right now, and under Paul’s leadership the Chamber will be positioned to advance its work in creating a strong economy and more vibrant community," Mr. Eikenberry said. Mr. Rumler said he was 'thrilled' to be returning to the community to lead the Quad Cities Chamber.

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Posted on March 12, 2018
Project Updates

Economic development, branding campaign continues for northwest Houston communities

The Houston Northwest Chamber of Commerce has raised $615,000 in its campaign to expand economic development and to better brand the community. "We are encouraged that despite all the many fundraising campaigns that take place in this community, that our major employers have decided that Grow Northwest represents a significant return-on-investment for them," Thomason said in a statement. "We are grateful for their understanding and support of community and economic development."

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Before a surgeon can operate, the surgical team must check the patient’s vital signs to ensure they are healthy enough to undergo the procedure. Similarly, a capital campaign is a major operation impacting the financial health of your nonprofit. A feasibility study is a critical…

It’s the end of the fiscal year and you’re a few bucks short of your annual fund goal. The reserves are thin. What should you do to close the gap? Here are the top three things you should never do. 1. Send a mass email and post on social media that you must raise funds by year-end.

We’ve all been there. You go in to meet with a potential investor, begin to outline your strategic plan and funding needs and are having a great dialogue. Frankly, you’re in the zone and loving it. After all that great banter you get the all…

Feasibility studies are a critical first step in fundraising. They typically are 20 to 30 questions in length and give you a great perspective on your organization: how people view the board, the effectiveness of the team, and who in the community should lead the…

Your capital campaign is over. You’ve secured the funding needed to implement your strategic plan, grow your services, make capital improvements, etc. Now what? Having a strong investor relations program is a critical element of every capital campaign.

Conducting a funding feasibility study is an important first step every organization must take before launching a capital campaign. This process helps you determine the viability of your project before investing significant time and money into the campaign. A well-executed feasibility study will paint a…

I love business-led, civic-economic nonprofit entities (chambers of commerce), but the affection is seldom nurtured by their electronic identities. I know and respect what they do and who they represent! Why don’t chamber websites and social media accounts demonstrate and amplify their initiatives, services, and…

Capital campaigns are a group effort. Simply having a strong executive director or board chair at the helm is not a guarantee of success; it’s all about having the right team assembled. Convergent is happy to share Allison’s guest blog post as it provides valuable…

The search for Amazon’s second HQ in the United States has thrust economic development into the national spotlight. In fact, one of my favorite sessions at IEDC‘s 2018 Leadership Summit was the Tuesday morning special plenary session, “Chasing the Big Deal,” which focused heavily on…

You’re in a team meeting when lightning strikes: your team just hatched the most incredible idea! It has the potential to answer all your problems, fix community issues, and revolutionize your organization. It is so tempting to go out and try to raise money for…

Just when you thought you might be free from my meddling, I stumble back into chamber life. I am proud to announce my new affiliation with Convergent Nonprofit Solutions, a firm that has proven itself to be a formidable resource for chambers and development organizations. While…

If we are being honest, on most days our inboxes are buried under a barrage of email. Many of the emails are automated email newsletters from businesses or organizations that we support. Many get marked “read” without us ever opening them or reading them. Really…

This year’s Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives’ (ACCE) Annual Conference was, quite possibly, the best ACCE conference we’ve ever attended! From line dancing at the Wild Horse Saloon (what a hoot!) to ACCE President Mick Fleming’s moving goodbye toast, it was definitely an experience…

Every year Mark attends the MAKO Chamber Conference. This annual meeting of chamber professionals from Missouri, Arkansas, Kansas, and Oklahoma has grown drastically since its inception, and this year had the largest attendance yet. After each conference, Mark usually shares a few of the “Frequently Asked Questions” he heard about chamber fundraising and our services during the conference, but this year, we thought we’d change things up a bit.

Convergent Note: The following is a brief excerpt from the article “Counterpoint: Feasibility Studies and Other Reasons Outside Counsel Can Help Small Nonprofits,” recently published by NonProfit PRO and written by Principal Mark Bergethon. To read the full article, follow the link at the bottom of…

I very much enjoyed yet another Tennessee Chamber of Commerce Executives (TCCE) conference this year. Kyle Spurgeon and his team from the Jackson Chamber of Commerce were out in full force playing gracious host and did a great job all around. Special personal congratulations were…

I pulled up to the hotel and heard familiar sounds, sensed the savory smells and felt the energy that was unmistakably Savannah made. The Florida storms had wreaked havoc on the interstates, so it was too late to make an appearance at The Chairman’s Gala that…

Testimonials are a powerful way to deliver a convincing message. The credibility of third party endorsement is gold, and that credibility is even stronger when the testimonial comes from a familiar face. That’s why testimonials can be so effective for chambers of commerce and other…

This article was originally written for and published in the International Economic Development Council’s “ED Now” newsletter. We are excited to make it available to non-IEDC members here for the first time. Economic development organizations increasingly are joining forces with like-minded organizations to tackle complex economic issues….

We had a great time in Montreal and we hope you did as well! As always, the ACCE Annual Conference provided a great opportunity to meet up with old friends, clients, and colleagues, and make new acquaintances, too. Throughout the conference, we consistently heard attendees commenting…

Initiating a capital campaign is an exciting opportunity. It’s a time when you can help move your organization forward in a very dynamic way, although there are always a few challenges that will arise during a campaign. Many Executive Directors & CEOs might find themselves…

By Mark Bergethon We are excited to have Principal Mark Bergethon featured in FundraisingSuccess’s “ProSpeak,” which features essays about “the nitty-gritty of fundraising, written by the people who do it every day.” Here is a quick look at the article: Through the implementation and analysis…

New IOM graduates, pictured left to right: Larkin Simpson, IOM, Chamber Director & Project Manager, Jones County Chamber of Commerce (MS); April Bragg, IOM, President & CEO, Milledgeville­Baldwin County Chamber (GA); Brian Tucker, IOM, Director of Economic Development, Georgetown County Economic Development (SC); Lindsay Frilling,…

The Central Florida Foundation (CFF) is a public grant-making foundation that serves as a trusted philanthropic home for more than 400 charitable funds throughout Central Florida.    Convergent has had the good fortune to get to know CFF better over the past several months, and…

By Mark Bergethon Every year chamber professionals from Missouri, Arkansas, Kansas, and Oklahoma gather together at Big Cedar Lodge to learn from one another, and this year the main goal was to “Get Real.” Session topics focused on “Real Chambers, Real Challenges, Real Solutions,” and…

Throughout this blog you’re bound to see many posts where we refer to “investors” and nonprofit “investments.” Don’t worry though; you are in the right place. This blog is meant to help nonprofits get a better understanding of the fundraising process, and we believe that…

“Thomasville, NC is an All-America City!” As a Chamber Executive, this is one of my favorite things to say. The National Civic League presents only 10 All-America City awards each year and after much hard work, Thomasville earned that designation in 2013. The All-America City…

The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) recently released a study titled “Raising the Bar Together: Successful Strategies for Workforce and Economic Development Collaboration.” It is certainly worth a read for anyone involved with Chambers of Commerce or Economic Development Organizations. Of particular interest to the…

A recent article in the The Chronicle of Philanthropy has spurred a lot of discussion among the principals here at Convergent. The article cites a study by Szu-chi Huang, assistant professor of marketing at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, in which she suggests that…

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Tell Us About You

We’d love to hear more about your organization’s fundraising concerns and goals to see how we can help.

Convergent is certainly among the best partners in our chamber/association and economic development industry. They have the experience and success that is needed in our ever-changing nonprofit sector. I urge you to give Convergent every consideration during your due diligence period (as we did at TAB) as you will not be disappointed in their work.

Chris Wallace, Past President
Texas Association of Business, TX

Convergent has done two campaigns for our local economic development foundation. Both were very successful. The Convergent team has a practiced approach to their entire process from program planning all the way through to campaign wrap-up. On both occasions, the Convergent rep "on the ground" doing the fundraising represented the organization and cause very well. We got nothing but good feedback from people they approached whether or not a pledge was made.

Mac Williams, President
Alamance County Area Chamber, NC

Convergent's work resulted in a significant increase to our previous investment amounts. The succinctly messaged our campaign and strategy in a way that resonated with Gainesville businesses.

Susan Davenport, Past President & CEO
Gainesville Area Chamber, FL