Chamber chairman gives thanks for support, success

By: Franklin Burris, Rocklin Area Chamber of Commerce
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With heartfelt gratitude, and getting ambitious about our future ... The most important thing I can tell you this month, is my personal, very heartfelt, humble and a grateful THANK YOU. Thank you for your support during my year as chairman, and for continuing to engage, work hard and invest your time and resources into Rocklin and it’s business community. It has been my honor to represent you, to serve you, and represent this Chamber and my home town of Rocklin. The Rocklin Chamber is the best. With energized members, talented volunteers (ambassadors and board members) and a great seasoned staff (Robin, Megan, Christine and Julie) – the Rocklin Chamber is continually improving, seizing opportunity, and innovating our services and programs. It has been a pleasure to serve, and thank you all for making it so easy! At this time of year, we check both the rearview mirror, as well as the windshield, while hitting the gas! We celebrate what we accomplished, note what we didn’t get done, and get ambitious about our future. I proudly join a long legacy of Chairs of the Chamber, who have labored to transmit the organization better than we found it, each giving our own special contribution to the Chamber’s rich legacy. Thank you for that opportunity, and thank you to each of you that came before me for the incredible organization you have given us. I am proud that part of my small contribution to this Chamber is a standing committee focused on Downtown, and it’s redevelopment ... the Rediscover Rocklin committee. Downtown is our future, our opportunity site, and is our city’s challenge to innovate. Long discussed and wished for, it’s time is now, and the Chamber is helping to coalesce business and property owners around that future. It will take stick-to-it’tiveness, collaboration, partnerships and a bit of sweat and vision (and, OK, more patience). To that end, Rediscover Rocklin and many other nonprofits are partnering to produce a Holiday Tree Lighting event on Dec. 4 by St. Mary’s Church at Heritage Park by the Chamber office. It will be a family-oriented, community-enriching event as Rocklin is celebrated for, thanks to the generosity of residents and businesses willing to pitch in and make it happen. That inspires me, and it should give us all hope in the promise of Rocklin’s future. Join me, Santa, and fellow business leaders as we launch this new event – oh, and bring the kids! The board has worked hard this year to get more strategic about the Chamber’s operations and programs. Making economic development a priority, we remain committed to collaborating with the city to create an economic development plan that will focus on business retention and growth. You have seen greater policy advocacy on issues related to business success, and in our survey’s, programming and positioning of our city within our region. Issues like signage, permit costs, a facade grant/loan program for downtown, and opportunities for reinventing some of our city’s processes are all results of this. Like any self help or personal growth effort, this reinvention of our city and business community doesn’t come easy, but the results will be worth it. We all might not be the person we want to be, but we are sure glad we are not the person we used to be – at least that is true for me (Amen all by myself), and hopefully will be true for our community and city too. Rocklin’s future is bright and full of opportunity. While anxious to see it, let’s all remember to enjoy the journey, and celebrate the successes and moments along the way. Yours in service, Franklin Burris. Franklin Burris is the 2010 Chairman of the Rocklin Chamber Board of Directors.