A Message from the Chairman of the Chamber Board of Directors, Joe Bergquist
Hello everyone! As we get ready to close out 2022, I wanted to recap all the accomplishments of the Perkiomen Valley (PV) Chamber for this past year. In 2022, it was back to in-person networking full time, with the Chamber experienced great turnout in all our events. Some highlights for 2022:
- The annual holiday party, held in December of 2021, was the PV Chamber’s first major in-person event since the start of Covid. It was a tremendous success. Well attended with many new features added.
- Jill Chuss was added to the Chambers support staff. Jill is a most welcome addition to the Chamber family.
- The annual meeting in March was the chambers first in-person Annual meeting in three years. This too was another successful well attended event.
- The summer mixer, which is becoming an annual event, was once again extremely well attended. This event is held at the Chamber officer with members enjoying food and drinks from local companies.
- The annual Golf Outing held at Spring Ford Country Club once again proved an incredibly successful event.
- 2022 added a new event, a Sporting Clays Tournament, which was well received and well attended. The Chamber is looking forward to expanding this event in 2023.
- Aside from major events, the PV Chamber continues to hold business mixers for local companies along with regular events such as Business Roundtable, Women in Networking (WIN), Men’s Night, and Business Book Club.
- The PV Chamber has one more big event for 2022, the annual holiday party. This year the event will be held at Rivercrest Country Club.
- Our events committee continues to look at developing new events for 2023, including a corn hole tournament and possible business expo.
I would like to thank the Board Members, Executive Committee, Ambassadors, and volunteers that helped to make 2022 such a successful year. Without all your combined contributions the chamber would not be the ‘home’ it is for all the members. Thank you to our Executive Director, Renee Blomstrom, who continues to be the best executive director for any chamber around. Renee’s tireless contributes allow everyone else the ability to shine. We cannot thank her enough!
A very special thank you to our recent past Chairman, Kip Bilo and Bob Clark, for seeing the PV Chamber through perhaps the most tumultuous time in the chamber’s history in 2020 and 2021. Without your leadership the chamber would not be in the strong position it is today.
As of November 2022, the PV Chamber’s financial position is strong. Due to the hard work of our Treasurer, Matt Baker, the Chamber was able secure tax credits and PPP funding in 2021 and 2022. These funds, along with our membership base have given the Chamber a strong balance sheet heading into 2023. The Chamber is in financial position to not only continue providing the same great events for our members next year, but we can look to expand our offerings.
The one negative this year was a slightly lower number of membership renewals than anticipated. This was not exclusive to the PV Chamber as most of the chambers in the Montgomery County area experienced a decline in membership. Therefore, going into 2023, the Chamber will be making a concerted effect to bring back those members that have not renewed, along with a drive to add new members. The value proposition of the Chamber has not changed in the last three years, if anything, the value of being a Chamber member has only increased. For me personally, it does not matter how advanced or fancy technology gets, relationships are what drive business and relationships will ALWAYS MATTER! There is no place around that fosters the development of strong relationships better than the PV Chamber.
As we move into 2023, the country could be facing an economic downturn that could lead into a recession. If a recession comes to pass and depresses the micro economy i.e., local businesses, then networking will continue to be a key strategic ingredient in driving the sales of your company. I speak from personal experience having lived through 2007-2009, as many, if not most, of our membership did. Overall, in times of decreased economic activity, maintaining strong relationships through networking is essential to the continued success of your business.
Regardless of what happens economically in 2023, the PV Chamber Board and Executive Committee are looking forward to another great year of events, networking and business development. The PV Chamber will always be here to aid our members in building their businesses in good times or bad!
Dr. Joe Bergquist, 2022-2023 Chairman of the Chamber Board of Directors