Richardson Chamber of Commerce Awarded Five-Star Accreditation from U.S. Chamber of Commerce
**Chamber staff and Executive Board show the 5-star accreditation with the sign now outside the Chamber offices on Belle Grove Drive.**
The United States Chamber of Commerce has awarded the Richardson Chamber of Commerce with a five-star accreditation, its highest accreditation level, for high quality, expertise and strong leadership. Of the nearly 7,000 chambers of commerce in the United States, Richardson is one of only 67 to be distinguished with five stars, placing it in the top 1 percent. Only 18 chambers in Texas are accredited, and, of those, only three have achieved the prestigious five-star rating.
The Richardson Chamber received a five-star rating on its first attempt. “Receiving a five-star accreditation on our first application shows how well planned, executed and effective the programs of the Richardson Chamber are when judged by the best in our industry,” said Jim Strand, chair elect of the Richardson Chamber of Commerce. “This recognition by the U.S. Chamber shows the commitment and vision of our Board of Directors, committees, membership, staff and community. Our members, the City of Richardson and our many partners can feel confident that they are being served by a top-notch U.S. Chamber committed to their success.”
This accreditation program by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the only national program that recognizes chambers for effective organizational procedures and community involvement. The accreditation program was established in 1969. “Accreditation validates a chamber as having programs that benefit their local economy and for positively influencing action in their community,” said Raymond P. Towle, IOM, CAE, U.S. Chamber Executive Director of Political Affairs and Federation Relations. “We applaud these organizations for advancing the principles of free enterprise.”
In order to receive accreditation, a chamber must meet rigorous standards in their operations and programs, including areas of governance, government affairs, program development, human resources and staff development, finance, communications, facilities and technology.
The Richardson Chamber staff and many volunteers spent a year making changes to improve organizational performance. Bylaws were updated. Marketing plans were improved. Technology audits were performed, and many other processes were refined.
Under the leadership of immediate past chair, Jeanne Hooker, special task forces were formed to tackle program development and governance, including the strategic planning task force, headed by Jim Strand of Avnet and now the chairman of the board, along with a governance and by-laws task force, headed by Chris Luna of Metro PCS and a member of the Chamber's executive committee.
“We’re very proud of this recognition and want to thank those who worked on the application, the Board of Directors and our committees,” said Sproull. “Ultimately, this honor is another opportunity to promote our mission of providing the citizens and businesses of Richardson with professional growth, leadership, advocacy, connection-building and economic development.”
The application was delivered to the US Chamber in time for their Dec. 31, 2010 deadline, and the Chamber was notified of its accreditation ranking in March. The accreditation lasts for 5 years until the end of 2016. 2010 Chairman Jeanne Hooker announced it to the membership at the Chamber’s recent annual meeting.
About the Chamber of Commerce
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.
About Richardson Chamber of CommerceThe Richardson Chamber of Commerce is North Texas’ premier chamber of commerce and serves as the voice of the local Richardson business community. Instrumental in the expansion of more than 50 businesses, development of 50 new restaurants and creation of more than 6,500 jobs, the Chamber is the ideal PLACE for members to actively enhance their business opportunities in the North Texas region. The Chamber focuses on Professional Growth, Leadership, Advocacy, Connection-Building and Economic Development for the Richardson community. Founded 65 years ago, the Chamber has grown to serve nearly 1,000 active members and is closely aligned with its local sister organization, the Metroplex Technology Business Council, as well as the US Chamber of Commerce.