2020 marks the Northern Virginia Chamber’s 95th year in business, but rather than planning big celebrations with much fanfare, we’ve instead spent our year doing what we do best: working on our members’ behalf. There is no area where this is more true than in our Government Advocacy work. Between the COVID-19 pandemic and major elections set to take place in the fall, to say 2020 has been a big year in Government is an understatement.
We recently launched our members-only advocacy email, The Chamber Bulletin, to help keep our members informed on business-relevant federal, state, and local government alerts and deadlines. Each issue contains items that Clayton Medford, our VP Government Relations, has carefully selected for our members’ NOVA businesses. I encourage you to read each Bulletin as it’s likely at least one piece relates to your business (contact Carmen Sevilla for membership details).
While keeping our members informed is important, our real focus is directly advocating for your business. We do this in a variety of ways, including maintaining full-time representation in Richmond throughout each year’s General Assembly and working directly with government officials throughout the year. Members who want to become actively involved are encouraged to contact Clayton.
The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted us to add new layers to our advocacy work. We’ve hosted many of our State’s Government leaders in related webinars that can be found as recordings on our COVID-19 website. We recently introduced you to the NOVA Back to Work Leadership Task Force’s online Resource Center, a project we spearheaded and collaborated with GO Virginia and other regional Chambers and organizations.
The Chamber hosts policy focused events of all sizes throughout the year and has direct advocacy relationships with regional institutions like Northern Virginia Community College and George Mason University. There are countless ways for our members to engage with Virginia’s most influential policy makers.
Our Member Benefits are quite extensive, but one that may not be as well known is that the Chamber can advocate for a member's business on local government matters like land use and taxes, showing the positive economic effects of a good business environment and growth in Northern Virginia.
I encourage our members to participate and use our advocacy services. We’re here for our members, pandemic or not. 2020 has been a busy year here at the Chamber and we’re not slowing down any time soon!