The December 2016 Chamber of Commerce Luncheon was catered by Subway and hosted by the folks at Boulders Inn. Chamber President Kyle Matzen opened the meeting with the usual introductions and thanked the Chamber members for a great year. He then introduced the 2017 Chamber President, Desiree Pliler of Squared Away Financial.
Desiree spoke about her excitement to serve the community for the next twelve months as the Polk City Chamber of Commerce President and after mentioning the next Chamber luncheon in January, she touched on the unification of the Chamber and the Polk City Development Corporation (PCDC). The Chamber board, PCDC board and Polk City Mayor met and after forming a committee, felt it was time to unify the PCDC and Chamber under one management system.
Desiree introduced John Calhoun, Director of the PCDC and he spoke in detail about the unification of the two organizations. The PCDC board formed a Transition Committee consisting of the Mayor and PCDC Executive Committee. This committee met to review past progress of the organization and hope for the future.
The committee felt that it was time to unify PCDC and the Chamber under one management system that would allow Polk City to take the next step in being a significant member of the Des Moines Metro area. The Transition Committee met with the Chamber of Commerce to discuss a new structure that would facilitate a unification of the two organizations.
After meeting and reviewing the options, it was decided to recommend that PCDC and the Chamber unify under one management system. The proposal was that PCDC & the Chamber will enter into a contract with Provident Consulting to manage both organizations for the period of January 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017. Both organizations will continue to have separate board meetings and in addition, an executive committee consisting of the officers of both organizations will meet monthly to further review how the organizations can eliminate duplications and enhance efficiencies.
Provident Consulting will continue to have John Calhoun as the Director of both organizations and will also hire a part time assistant (25 to 30 hours per week) and will create an office on the square. Provident Consulting’s goal during that year period will be to prepare PCDC to be in a position to employ a new Director after the completion of the year.
The PCDC Board unanimously approved this recommendation from the Transition Committee at the August 23rd board meeting. The Chamber unanimously approved the recommendation on their September 1st board meeting. John then introduced the new part time assistant, Sheila Mahan, five year resident of Polk City and Wells Fargo retiree.
Mayor Jason Morse took some time for his comments about the unification and spoke briefly about the greatly improved relationship between the Chamber and the City government. He also spoke about the growth our city has experienced this past year and promised to share more at the January Chamber Luncheon.
The Mayor also spoke about the City pulling out of the DART system.
After everyone thanked and applauded Kyle Matzen for serving this past year as Chamber President, he introduced the rest of the new Chamber Board for 2017:
- Chris Tigges of Polk City Chiropractic
- Brandon Converse of Luana Savings Bank
- Ashlee Walton of North Polk Living Magazine