Happy New Year! The Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber has several important initiatives coming up that I’d like to bring to your attention and urge your participation.

We, the leaders at the Irving Chamber, believe that the foundation of any thriving community is a school system that prepares our children for higher education and good paying jobs. We also believe that building a quality educational system is everyone’s responsibility. That’s why my first act as Chairman of the Board was to make education a top priority and challenge our Directors to become actively involved in Irving’s schools. We are committing our time, money and talent toward making a difference in a child’s life, in a school, and in our community.

Michael McCall, Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce

Michael McCall, 2015-16 Board Chairman, Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce

This challenge was met with an enthusiastic response. We now have 13 businesses that have stepped up and agreed to partner with a school, and another 9 businesses that are serving as district partners. The support that businesses are providing the district is funneling down to address the needs of multiple schools. With several other partnerships in the works, we are truly activating our mission to create, advance and promote economic growth and invest in our future workforce.

The Chamber Board wishes to extend that challenge to our members. With 1,800 members, think of the difference we could make in Irving schools and our community! There are many different ways that you, your employees and business can contribute. Three years ago, my company, NCH Corporation, adopted nearby Good Elementary. At this school, many of the parents do not speak English; ninety percent need help with lunch money; and the school didn’t have the technology or tools that are essential for preparing students for the real world today. Since we adopted Good Elementary, we’ve purchased 47 iPads and made $60,000 in cash contributions. But, our employees wanted to do more! An hour a week of your time, mentoring a child, can be transformative. Just ask anyone on our team. One of our VPs mentored a child that won the Spelling Bee last year.

Our students need role models and mentors. They need to see what life can be like with an education. We in the business community need to invest in our future workforce! That’s why the Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber’s Board of Directors is asking you to make a difference in a school and future employees’ lives. For more information about the variety of opportunities, please contact Dexter Freeman, Director of Intelligence, Innovation and Education at dfreeman@irvingchamber.com or 214-217-8484.

Also, I want to invite you to attend and participate in Irving’s 2016 State of the City dinner on January 26, 2016, beginning at 6 pm at the Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas. The Honorable, Mayor Beth Van Duyne will be the keynote speaker. The theme of her remarks this year is Irving: A City of New Beginnings. This is a great time to meet and talk with City, County, Legislative and Congressional public officials, as well as civic, business and community leaders. This annual event is hosted by the Chamber and is an important signature program for our organization. I want to personally thank the Verizon Corporation for their company commitment to our 5-Star Chamber as well as serving as this year’s presenting sponsor. There are still available sponsorship opportunities: Silver $2,500, Gold $5,000, Platinum $7,500. Individual tickets are $125 for members. For more information about the benefits of a sponsorship, please contact Ashley Dixon, Manager of Signature Programs & Operations, at 214-217-8484 or adixon@irvingchamber.com.

And finally, was there ever a more important time to show your appreciation to the men and women who keep Irving safe? The 20th Annual Police Awards Banquet is on Tuesday, March 29, 2016, at the Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas.  A silent auction kicks-off the evening at 6:30 pm, followed by dinner at 7:00 pm.  This event honors officers who have exhibited outstanding leadership and excellence including Officer of the Year and the Brass Pig award.

There are still opportunities for sponsorships of this wonderful event including purchasing a table for officers and their families. Proceeds from this event go to the Irving Family Advocacy Center. The Irving Police Department partners with the Family Advocacy Center to respond to the needs of families and victims of crime including family counseling, parent education classes, and play therapy for young crime victims. For more information about the Police Awards Banquet, contact Carol Susat at (972) 721-4837 or Kayte Roberts at keroberts@cityofirving.org

I want to thank you for your investment and support of the 5-Star Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce. The fact that we were the first chamber in Texas to earn the coveted 5-Star accreditation by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and our reaccreditation last year is indicative of the caliber of talent and commitment by our members, leadership and staff. We have an ambitious agenda this fiscal year as we “Deliver Irving’s Future“, while supporting Irving businesses and our community, and we need your help! Please join us for the State of the City dinner and invite a prospective member to join as your guest. Make a commitment to support our Irving schools, and remember and acknowledge the fine work done by our police officers.


Michael McCall
NCH Corporation
2015-16 Board Chairman, Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce




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