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​​AUSTIN AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

CHAMBER COMMITTEES

100 CLUB

Held the first Friday in March, is this social fundraiser was formed to raise funds for Freedom Fest Fireworks.


AGRI-BUSINESS

This committee exists to promote agri-business in the Austin area and establish links between agriculture and the business community.  Activities include organization of the Ag Appreciation Cookout, which is held annually the third Tuesday in July, in the Plager Building, at the Mower County Fairgrounds.  The committee also supports the National Barrow Show, 4-H Ribbon auction, Mower County Corn Growers, Dairy Princess, FFA, Pork Ambassador and similar programs. 

Committee Chair:  Darrell Ingvaldson, Farm Bureau Financial Services


AUSTINWORKS

This is an economic development initiative designed to help attract, develop and sustain a quality workforce with skills that align with current and future career opportunities in Austin and the surrounding area.  Services include ongoing help with relocating, finding a home, connecting to schools and organizations and more.  Over 200 families are served each year.  An advisory committee works directly with the coordinator of the program, Austin's Community Concierge.


BUSINESS EDUCATION

This committee was formed to raise the visibility of business within our schools and the community.  This committee raises funds and awards scholarships to Austin students in grades 8 & 12.  they also support the pathway programs, such as Step Up Austin and collaborate with established school-to-work initiatives. 

Committee Chair:  Amy Baskin, Austin Public Schools


COMMUNITY RECEPTIONIST

This committee was formed to promote Austin as a great place to live and work, and to provide new and prospective residents with information they need to quickly assimilate to the community.  Members of this committee also work closely with the Community Concierge.

Committee Chair: Jerry Wolesky, Fawver Agency


CHRISTMAS IN THE CITY

This committee organizes a calendar of events that promotes shopping in Austin during the holiday season, including Christmas in the City Kick-Off, Christmas in the NW, Christmas in the SW, and Christmas in the East. 

Committee Chairs: Marie Fryer, Kick-Off; Jackie Bumgardner, Christmas in the NW; Abby Wangen, Christmas in the SW; and Judy Enright, Christmas in the East


DOWNTOWN RETAILERS

The downtown committee organizes events and activities that showcase the downtown area, including Christmas in the City Kick-Off, Downtown Rummage Sale, and Crazy Days.  The committee also collaborates with the Vision 2020 Downtown Destination Committee on additional events and projects.  Committee Chair: Marie Fryer, Belles and Beaus Bridal & Formal Wear


FREEDOM FESTIVAL

A multi-day event, held annually in conjunction with the 4th of July, this committee organizes events and activities celebrating community Independence Day, including entertainment, parade, concessions, crafts, and fireworks. 

Committee Chair: Jeff Baldus, Austin Area Foundation


GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS

The public policy arm of the Chamber, this committee works to provide Chamber business members with a strong voice in government affairs, particularly at the local level.  This committee studies issues that affect business, develops policies to improve the business climate, and advocates for business interests.  Partners with the Minnesota Chamber and other local chambers throughout the state as part of the Minnesota Chamber Federation. 
Committee Chair:  Taggert Medgaarden, Cedar Valley Services, Inc. 


GROW MINNESOTA!

A statewide private sector business retention and expansion program led by the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce in partnership with 70 local Chambers.  Locally, the Austin Chamber partners on this project with the DCA.  the purpose is to recognize and thank businesses for being here, identify their concerns and opportunities, and offer the Chamber's assistance in resolving problems and/or achieving goals. 

Committee Chair: Sandy Forstner, Austin Chamber


HUMAN RESOURCES

This committee provides a networking opportunity for professionals working in the HR industry.  Best practices and issues are discussion.  The committee serves as an important link to AustinWorks and Community Concierge services.  Related advisory group works closely with concierge services. 

Committee Chair: Kristen Olson, Community Concierge


LADIES NIGHT OUT

This committee was organized as a social fundraiser for women in business with a portion of the proceeds dedicated to a Riverland scholarship, for non-traditional female students. 

Committee Chair: Jana Gray, Austin Daily Herald


LEADERSHIP AUSTIN

A community-based education and development program designed to provide an ongoing source of motivated leaders informed about the community, its challenges and opportunities and connected to people and resources that can help effect positive change. 

Year Leaders: Taggert Medgaarden, Cedar Valley Services, Inc.; Coby Cost, Hormel Foods Corporation



The Chamber represents the interests of business and works on projects that will improve our area business climate.  Over 200 volunteers from member businesses and organizations contribute their talents on Chamber committees.  Each committee is unique and focuses on a different area of service.  Consider signing up for a committee that is beneficial to your company.  Be Active, it's good for business!