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Floral Park Chamber Of Commerce Working To Build Progressive Business Community

Green initiatives, website expand online presence for members

Running any business in the digital age has its challenges and its perks. Thanks to the ongoing efforts of board members, the Floral Park Chamber of Commerce is continuing to build a progressive and thriving business community through its newly revamped website and networking events.

As an organization of business leaders who work to improve their community and the area’s business climate, the Floral Park Chamber of Commerce comprises a volunteer board of directors. It is one of the main resources for small and medium-sized firms doing business in Floral Park and is poised to help upwards of 200 members and associates deal with the changing business climate in the town, city and state.   

As of January 2012, Theresa Whalen, owner of the Sterling Sign Company, was installed as the new president, a role she is familiar with. The 33-year Floral Park resident has been a longtime member and past president in 2001. In her upcoming term, she says she hopes to better intertwine the village and the school community with local businesses to create one complete community.

As the organization celebrates its 60th anniversary next year, Whalen has also set forth online and green initiatives, which she feels are essential to its long-term success. In the coming year, she plans to grow the membership and to have the members network with one another to expand their businesses.

“We are pretty much going digital. We do a handful of mailings for the entire year,” Whalen explains.

In order to best achieve these goals, the chamber’s vice president Tom Clifford, of TC & Company, has redesigned the chamber website to help businesses connect with one another and the local community. One of the newest components is the introduction of modular technology, which allows members to log in and interact with its multifunctions for online registrations, payments and donations.

Clifford maintains that allowing multiple administrative users gives the individual chamber member a chance to be an administrator and change the way the community views their profile.

“What we’ve done is create a website that is completely modular now…for membership and events,” Clifford asserted. “It’s pretty cool; it’s very advanced, state-of-the-art.”

In 2005, the business profile of the month was first debuted on the website as free space to members. It has grown in popularity and the spot has become a paid feature that profiles a business, providing direct links to members’ websites via Constant Contact emails with member thumbnails for an entire month.

“The idea is the more and more people see you, the more possible chances that they will do business,” Clifford added.

The immediate results can be seen in increased chamber memberships and attendance at meeting events, Clifford said. “Last year before we were doing this, we used to have 20 members come to a meeting. Now we’re getting 40, 60 members.”

The next chamber of commerce meeting is held on May 3, from noon to 2 p.m. at Trinity Restaurant in Floral Park. The event will feature guest speakers Dr. Ralph Ferrie, Sewanhaka Central HS District superintendent; and Dr. Lynn Pombonyo, Floral Park Bellerose School District superintendent, who will share information about the 2012-13 school budgets.

Floral Park Chamber of Commerce membership is open to all businesses, individuals or associates that maintain voluntary annual dues. The chamber is a private organization and is not a government agency and receives no tax dollars.

For more information on the Floral Park Chamber of Commerce, visit www.floral parkchamber.org.

News

On March 29, women were invited to attend the second annual Women’s Symposium, Education to Entertainment: A Morning of Learning, Listening and Laughter, sponsored by the Floral Park Lions Club in collaboration with District 20k2. Through the generosity of the Sewanhaka Central High School District and Floral Park Memorial High School principal Dr. Kathleen Sottile and staff, the school hosted the event for the second year.

Women’s positions and responsibilities are constantly changing and there is an ongoing necessity to provide women with a forum by which to address these and other demands. The symposium concentrated on many current issues in 16 diversified and enlightening workshops.

The Sewanhaka Central High School District School Board adopted the 2014-15 proposed budget last week. The proposed budget total for the 2014-15 school year is $175.3 million, a budget increase of $3.52 million from last year. The tax levy increase is set at 2.1 percent. The budget vote will take place on May 20.

The current projection for state aid in 2014-15 is $29.2 million in the state legislative budget, a slight increase from last year ($27.8 million).

“There was a budget-to-budget state aid increase of 5.2 percent,” District Superintendent Dr. Ralph Ferrie said.


Calendar

Women’s Club Membership Meeting

Wednesday, April 16

North End Civic Association To Meet

Thursday, April 17

Blood Drive

Friday, April 18



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