Chamber Press Releases

Aug 9, 2016 — by: Chrystal Vaughan

The Klamath County Chamber of Commerce has announced award-winning author Becky McCray will speak at the annual Rural Business & Innovation Summit 2016.

Slated for Wednesday, September 14th, McCray’s presentation, titled “10 Trends in Rural Favor”, will discuss topics pertaining to small towns and rural communities, the business climate of rural areas, and new trends influencing the future of rural businesses.

Other speakers and topics include:

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Aug 4, 2016 — by: Heather Tramp

The board of the Klamath County Chamber of Commerce voted unanimously July 25, 2016 to oppose Ballot Measure 97 that would impose a new $6 billion tax on the sales of goods and services in Oregon – everything from food, clothing, cars and housing to gas, utilities, prescriptions and health care.

“Measure 97 unfairly taxes sales, not profits,” said Klamath County Chamber Board President Todd Andres. “Measure 97 creates a condition where businesses would have to pay a 2.5% tax on sales in Oregon even when they make no profit or lose money. That would especially hurt businesses that have slim profit margins, like grocery stores, medical clinics and farms.”

The board reviewed a recent study by the state’s nonpartisan Legislative Revenue Office (LRO). It concluded that about two thirds of this tax on sales would end up being paid by Oregon consumers through higher prices on nearly everything we buy – costing the average Oregon household more than $600 every year.

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Jul 6, 2016 — by: Heather Tramp

Apr 21, 2016 — by: Heather Tramp

Two Historic Senate Victories in One Day Build upon Earlier House Success

In the wake of the U.S. Senate passing two separate bills within a 24-hour period that will lead to improved economic Amy W Amrhein, Southern Oregon Field Representative, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR)security for Klamath County, a press conference with local media and community leaders was held Thursday, April 21.

The Senate on Tuesday passed legislation renewing and updating the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)’s authorities, which includes a bipartisan provision pushed by Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, the Treating Small Airports with Fairness (TSA Fairness) Act. The TSA Fairness Act would restore Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screening at the Crater Late-Klamath airport. This provision is important for the restoration of commercial service at the airport. 

“With the summer tourism season just around the corner, it’s more urgent than ever for the TSA to resume screening so that the Klamath Falls airport can restore commercial service,” said Senator Merkley. “With this Senate vote and the House’s vote last week, we are very close to getting this done and I hope we can get it to the President’s desk as soon as possible.”

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Apr 19, 2016 — by: Heather Tramp

Oregon’s Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced that the U.S. Senate today passed legislation renewingAirport and updating the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)’s authorities, which includes a bipartisan provision pushed by Merkley and Wyden, the Treating Small Airports with Fairness (TSA Fairness) Act. The TSA Fairness Act would restore Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screening at, among other smaller airports, the Crater Late-Klamath airport. This provision is important for the restoration of commercial service at the airport. 

The U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed a standalone version of the TSA Fairness Act last week, and is expected to act soon on the broader FAA legislation. The TSA Fairness Act is supported by a bipartisan coalition in both chambers, including Oregon Representatives Greg Walden and Peter DeFazio in the House.

“With the summer tourism season just around the corner, it’s more urgent than ever for the TSA to resume screening so that the Klamath Falls airport can restore commercial service,” said Merkley. “With this Senate vote and the House’s vote last week, we are very close to getting this done and I hope we can get it to the President’s desk as soon as possible.”

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Feb 24, 2016 — by: Heather Tramp

Leadercast is the world’s largest one-day leadership conference, broadcast LIVE from Atlanta and simulcast toSaban hundreds of locations around the world including Klamath Falls on May 6th, 2016.  This year marks the sixteenth year of the annual leadership conference and the eighth year that the Klamath County Chamber of Commerce will be at hosting the event. This year’s event will be held at Oregon Tech and is sponsored by Pacific Crest Federal Credit Union.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Architects of Tomorrow,” focusing on visionary leaders who imagine and build a future that is rich in innovation, collaboration and full of hope. A future where problems are solved, questions are answered, and confusion gives way to clarity.

The conference will equip attendees to create their own visionary path.  Key speakers – visionaries in their own fields – will inspire the more than 100 people who attend locally, and the more than 100,000 Wozpeople who will attend the event live in Atlanta or at hundreds of other simulcast locations in more than 20 countries.  Among the keynote speakers are:  

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Feb 8, 2016 — by: Heather Tramp

The Klamath County Chamber of Commerce welcomed close to 300 guests to their 95th Annual Awards Gala sponsored by Washington Federal. The gala is the time when the Chamber recognizes dedicated efforts on behalf of the Chamber members and entire community. Before the gala, Chamber members were asked to nominate businesses and/or individuals who showed support and dedication to our community. From the nominations, a committee selects the winner of each award. This year, the Chamber presented awards to recognize entrepreneurship, environmental practices, innovation, commitment to community, and more. The recipients of this year's award were:

*         Ambassador of the Year: Victoria Haley

*         Best Place to Work (15 or less employees): Monte Johnson Insurance Services, Inc.

*         Best Place to Work (16 or more employees): Running Y Ranch Resort

*         Big IDEA Innovation: Gaucho Collective

*         Commitment to Community: Millard Dental

*         Environmental Leadership: Oregon Tech

*         Pathfinder: Kathryn "Kat" Rutledge

*         Spirit of Entrepreneurism: Darren and Jen Roe

*         Lifetime Achivement: Dan and Susan Beach

The Klamath County Chamber of Commerce would like to thank everyone who made a nomination for these awards and congratulates all of the winners. For more information on this event or the Chamber, call (541) 884-5193 or visit www.klamath.org

 

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Dec 22, 2015 — by: Heather Tramp

The Klamath County Chamber of Commerce Board of Director's election is final. Five new directors were chosen by the membership to help lead the organization in the coming years. The new directors include: Tracy Brunner from OSU Klamath Basin Research and Extension Center, Janet Buckalew from Pacific Crest Federal Credit Union, Brian Gailey from Brian Gailey Photography, Dr. Roberto Gutierrez from Klamath Community College, and Dan Peterson from Oregon Tech. These new directors will serve the Chamber and its board from January 2016 through December 2018.

"We are thrilled with the participation and interest from all the candidates who stepped up to serve," says Dan Keppen, Chamber President, "The business community will be well represented in the coming years by the new directors."

In addition to the new directors, four current members were elected to serve a second term: George Ormsbee (Cal-Ore Communications), Jason Chapman (Chapman Ranch LLC), Werner Reschke (wrinkledog, inc), and Wes French (173d Fighter Wing). President Dan Keppen said, “These directors have been an asset to the board and we are thrilled that they will continue.”

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Sep 22, 2015 — by: Heather Tramp

The Klamath County Chamber of Commerce is seeking business and individual nominations for its annual awards which will be celebrated at the 95th Annual Awards Gala on February 6, 2015 at the Ross Ragland Theater.

The Chamber’s annual awards represent the highest honor the Chamber can bestow upon worthy individuals and Tashia Owen wins the 2015 Spirit of Entrepreneurism awardbusinesses. Executive Director Charles Massie says, “The awards are a way for the community and the Chamber to recognize the businesses and individuals in the community that make a difference and make Klamath a great place to work, play, and live.” This year, the Chamber will hand out awards for:

  • Big IDEA Innovation Award - Awarded to an organization in any industry that employs new ideas or approaches to doing business.  Innovation could fill an unmet need, create attention, be different or better than existing products, exceed market expectations, achieve financial success, or improve business systems.
  • Environmental Leadership Award - Awarded to any organization in any industry that demonstrates an alignment with clean energy or clean technology practices.
  • Commitment to Community - Awarded to any organization in any industry that demonstrates a successful approach to corporate social responsibility and can show a positive impact on the community.
  • Best Place to Work Award (business with 15 or less employees, business with 16 or more employees) - Presented to an organization that, through its innovation and dedication, provides employees with an outstanding positive, healthy and productive workplace.
  • Spirit of Entrepreneurism - Awarded to an individual who exhibits an entrepreneurial spirit, originality, personal integrity, and influence.  Awarded to an individual who has taken risks in business (could be started a new venture, expanded into a new area, taken on a difficult project, demonstrates “outside the box” thinking, or demonstrate a vision for the future).
  • Lifetime Achievement – Awarded to an individual who has demonstrated exceptional business achievement and outstanding commitment to Klamath’s business community over their lifetime.  Must be a business leader in Klamath County and be a member of the Chamber.  Must have participated in the Klamath business community for a minimum of 20 years.
  • The Pathfinder Award - Awarded to presidents, principals or chief executive officers for devoting time and energy to strengthen and transform the organization that they lead. This includes specific situations or initiatives where the recipient's insight, discernment and ability to lead and inspire have guided their organization to a new level of growth, achievement and recognition. This individual should actively support advancement of their organization, create a vision and inspire others, establish a positive image for his or her business while leading it to higher levels of success, encourage innovation and risk-taking among employees, and give back to the community.

Through the awards, the Chamber seeks to celebrate the dedication and commitment of the business talent and the entrepreneurial spirit that exists within our community. In 2015,  Tashia Owen of Tashi Soap Company received the Spirit of Entrepreneurism award for her entrepreneurial spirit and her success in her business. Tashia Owen says, "It was such an honor to receive such an important special award, like the Spirit of Entrepreneurship award, from our community, and to be rewarded for all of our hard work and commitment to serving others. It made us want to continue to do everything we can to stand out in our small town and be there for those in need. Much thanks to the Chamber for everything they do for the small businesses here locally!"

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Sep 1, 2015 — by: Heather Tramp

On September 18th, 2015, globally recognized community economics expert Michael H. Shuman will host a full-day Michael_shumanworkshop titled “Local Investment 101.” Shuman is an economist, attorney, author, and entrepreneur. Shuman has authored or coauthored eight books.  His most recent book, published by Chelsea Green, is Local Dollars, Local Sense:  How to Move Your Money from Wall Street to Main Street and Achieve Real Prosperity. His previous book, The Small Mart Revolution: How Local Businesses Are Beating the Global Competition (Berrett-Koehler, 2006), received as bronze prize from the Independent Publishers Association for best business book of 2006.

Shuman’s workshop is part of the inaugural Rural Business and Innovation Summit on September 16th through the 18th at Klamath Community College. His workshop will explore the expanding universe of local investment opportunities. Participants will learn a fundamentally new way of thinking about their world, their community, and their world. The workshop will include lecture, small group activities, and interaction. 

A prolific speaker, Shuman has given an average of more than one invited talk per week, mostly to local governments and universities, for 30 years—in 47 states and eight countries.  He has appeared on numerous television and radio shows, such as the Lehrer News Hour and NPR’s “Talk of the Nation,” and NPR’s “All Things Considered.”

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