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Maricopa Chamber of Commerce

The Maricopa Chamber of Commerce will not renew its lease for office space on Honeycutt Road this September.

In a news release published Friday, Chamber Board President Chris Cahall said the organization that promotes small and medium-sized businesses in Maricopa will operate “virtually” after its lease expires Aug. 31.

Meetings are proposed to take place at member businesses and, possibly, the Central Arizona College campus in Maricopa.

“We’ve got to evolve in order to keep up with how the world is changing, and I think this is going to be an awesome change for the Chamber and the membership,” Cahall told InMaricopa.

Cahall would not confirm if the Board’s vote was unanimous, instead saying the decision was approved.

The chamber’s evolution outside the budget-binding confines of its $2,300 monthly rent payment will allow it to focus those funds on member services, Cahall added.

Currently, three-quarters of members’ dues are allocated to rent and the executive director’s salary.

A minority of in-office visits involve visitors inquiring about member business information. Cahall said 90 percent of Chamber foot traffic is to the visitors’ center – a local tourism effort defunded by the City of Maricopa.

“How are we able to provide optimal benefits if most of our membership monies are going to a facility and only 10 percent of the people walking through the door on an annual basis are looking for membership information?” Cahall asked.

The Board’s answer is to wave good bye to its brick-and-mortar, an idea first proposed in a meeting with members two weeks ago.

“We think (having meetings at members’ businesses) will allow our networking events to be more member-centric on their turf,” Cahall said.

In addition to its member services like the networking and ribbon-cutting events, Cahall said the Board has proposed implementing an annual business speaker, as well as educational opportunities for members.

The Chamber’s monthly breakfast will still be held at Elements Event Center.

Cahall said the Board has also discussed using a portion of member dues to revamp the Chamber’s website, and is open to hearing ideas from members.

While it prepares to spend its last few months in its office space, the Chamber is also hunting for its new leader.

The Board is accepting applications for the new executive director until June 1 at 5 p.m., according to the news release.

The person who fills that role will eventually work from a home office after the Chamber moves out. Cahall said a candidate living in Maricopa is preferred.

The board president said he’d like to see the new director establish a visible presence in the community.

“I really want that executive director to be out with the members and be out finding members, and spreading the message of our small and medium-sized business community through Ahwatukee, Casa Grande, Chandler and attending networking events to assist and to continue to layer on member benefits showcasing the Maricopa chamber,” Cahall said.

Supervisor Anthony Smith talks about a recovering economy in his State of the County address. Photo by Michelle Chance

The Maricopa Chamber of Commerce hosted its first State of the County address Thursday evening.

Former city Mayor and current Pinal County Supervisor Anthony Smith led the conversation May 18 inside Elements Event Center.

Smith touted Pinal’s progress since the economic downturn at the beginning of the last decade.

“We are the first county to recover all the jobs that were lost during the recession,” Smith said.

Pinal’s unemployment rate as the recession peaked was higher than 11 percent. It’s now 4.6 percent, according to Smith.

“That basically means everybody who wants a job, has a job,” Smith said.

Pinal tops the state in growth at 14.49 percent. Maricopa County is second. However, the rapid development brings to the county a fair share of challenges.

Smith said the county has included goals in its strategic plan to lessen tax burdens on residents.

By 2021, the goal is to have the property tax rate reduced to 3.75 percent. Smith said property valuations and state tax revenues are growing.

The biggest slice in the county’s budget, 62 percent of the pie, goes to law enforcement, the adult detention center and the judicial system.

Pinal County Sherriff Mark Lamb said since being elected in 2016, the county jail population has decreased by nearly 200 prisoners.

“It’s not because we’re not arresting people,” Lamb said. “We are protecting these communities, but we’ve been working well with the County Attorney’s Office and we’re reducing your cost for you, the taxpayer.”

Smith talked about problems the county plans to address in the Maricopa area, including State Route 347.

The solution in Smith’s eyes was, of course, last year’s two, successful RTA ballot initiatives that are meant to improve roadways across the county.

Smith often called upon the county’s “brain trust” to speak to the work county employees are doing to increase its job prospects, tourism and big business.

Those appearances featured presentations from County Public Works Director Louis Anderson, County Manager Greg Stanley, Economic Development Program Manager Tim Kanavel and Joel Millman, Workforce Development Program Management for Arizona@Work Pinal County.

A glimpse into Pinal’s ideal future included road improvements, solving chronic flooding issues, reversing the exodus of workers outside the county and local job creation.

Arizona House Rep. Vince Leach (R-District 11), Mayor Christian Price, Maricopa Justice of the Peace Lyle Riggs, Constable Bret Roberts and city council members also attended the event.


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The Maricopa Chamber of Commerce Board announced it will hold a meeting this week “in an open conversation on the future growth and projects for the Chamber.”

A portion of that growth will be within the Chamber’s personnel, specifically attributed to its future director.

The Chamber recently advertised the full-time position online and set no deadline for submissions.

The breakfast mixer will give members the opportunity to lend their voice in the hiring process and other Chamber matters.

“I’m hoping we have a good amount of people there and we can discuss or address anybody’s concerns,” said Board Chairman Chris Cahall.

Cahall said the director’s salary range still needs to be decided but could be between $30,000-$40,000.

Former Chamber Director Terri Crain resigned last month to accept a position elsewhere. However, Crain is working part-time at the Chamber on a volunteer basis, Cahall said.

The meeting for Chamber members May 10 will be at Elements Event Center at 7 a.m.

“The Board (is) going to be in the room and we’re going to tell everyone that these are the things that the Board has been working on, trying to figure out and what we need to do,” Cahall said. “It’s not the Board’s Chamber, it’s not the City of Maricopa’s Chamber, it’s the memberships’ (Chamber).”


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County Supervisor Anthony Smith (District 4) in his Maricopa office. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

 

In what will be a first for Maricopa, a State of the County Address is scheduled for May 17, hosted by the Chamber of Commerce.

IF YOU GO
What: State of the County
When: May 17, 5:30 p.m.
Where: Elements Event Center at Ak-Chin Circle
Who: Supervisor Anthony Smith
How much: Individuals $35; table of eight $280
RSVP: MaricopaChamber.org

District 4 Supervisor Anthony Smith of Maricopa will talk about what’s happened in the past year and what’s ahead for Pinal County. Smith said outgoing chamber executive Terri Crain approached him about providing the update as a chamber fundraiser.

Though Maricopa is the second-largest municipality in Pinal County, Smith acknowledged many of its residents know more about what is happening in Maricopa County.

“We’re going to identify what kind of services we bring here, where the county offices are at the library/health department/HUD,” Smith said. There is a fair county presence in Maricopa, but we’ll eventually need more. It’s just a matter of growth.”

Smith is bringing with him several elected and appointed county officials, from County Manager Greg Stanley to Sheriff Mark Lamb. In fact, he’s set aside two tables for county personnel.

“I’m going to emphasize teamwork between the county and the city,” Smith said.

Atop that list is the successful campaign for the regional transportation authority. Though it is still in court on a lawsuit from the Goldwater Institute (and probably will be for the summer, Smith predicted), it saw a variety of Maricopa entities and individuals come together in support.

The teamwork of the county and local flood control districts and the Army Corps of Engineers, he said, will be crucial to Maricopa’s ability to grow.

He will also talk about the growing job market, predicting Maricopa will provide 25 percent of the labor for new projects in the county. Maricopa, he said, has a well-educated work force, “and that’s an advantage when recruiting for jobs.”

Smith said Pinal was the first county to manage its way out of the recession and continues the highest rate of growth (14.5 percent compared to Maricopa County’s 12.5 percent).

In his forays into District 4, Smith also fields concerns and complaints the county needs to address. Those include emergency-response time in rural areas, illegal dumping and code compliance.

Overall, however, he thinks Pinal County is on strong footing.

“Our finances are very solid,” Smith said. “We have a decent reserve. We balance our budgets.”


This story appears in the May issue of InMaricopa.

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Sara Troyer is leaving the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce to be replaced by former CEO Terri Crain.

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce announced the departure of Executive Director Sara Troyer and the return of Terri (Kingery) Crain.

Troyer led the chamber for a little more than a year and, 20 at the time, was one of the youngest chamber directors in the nation. According to chamber statistics, its membership increased by 12 percent and event attendance grew by 35 percent during her tenure.

 Crain was chief executive officer of the chamber from 2006 to January 2011. She then moved to California to be CEO of the Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce. She was praised for her hard work and credited with growing Maricopa Chamber’s membership by 400 percent, but she also left some controversy in her wake.

Crain worked at the Santa Clarita Chamber until April 2016. She will return to the post in Maricopa on May 15, moving back to her home in Rancho El Dorado.

“On behalf of the entire membership and the Board of Directors, we are so grateful for the time Sara spent with the Chamber; she did a fantastic job,” Chamber Chairman Chris Cahall said in a chamber statement. “We are excited and looking forward to supporting Terri in her position as our new executive director.  The Board is confident Terri will continue to support our members and foster the relationship we have with the city into the future.” 

Troyer is moving to Illinois to be program specialist for the College of Dupage Center for Entrepreneurship. Before coming to the Chamber of Commerce, she worked at the Maricopa Center for Entrepreneurship.

Crain opened her own small business in 2010, Smart Business Evolution.

“The City of Maricopa is a great community full of passionate and committed people and I have always thought of it home,” she stated in the chamber release. “I am looking forward to re-engaging with the business community and doing the good work of the Chamber.”  

Troyer was hired after an extensive search when Marla Lewis resigned. The process used in hiring Crain is not yet clear.

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce took its monthly after-hours mixer to the Ak-Chin Indian Community, where the Him-Dak Museum and Archives played host for the event. Members were greeted Chairman Robert Miguel, museum staff, food from Vekol Market and rooftop dancing. They were able to tour the museum and the nearby historic school.

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce

By Yvonne Gonzalez

A business owner is suing to force transparency from the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce.

Chamber member Kimberly Diedrich, whose husband Carl competed to lead the chamber before Sara Troyer was hired, filed the lawsuit May 20 in Pinal County Superior Court.

Diedrich says she and other chamber members were met with resistance from the board when they asked for documents related to hiring Troyer, who is a 2013 Maricopa High School graduate and former marketing and programs development director at the Maricopa Center for Entrepreneurship.

The chamber, according to Diedrich, listed a bachelor’s degree or five years of executive experience among the advertised job requirements. She said her husband fits those requirements and, according to the lawsuit, was one of two people to interview with the board for the executive directorship.

“I want to see votes, I want to see meeting minutes, I want to see notices of meetings,” she said. “I don’t think a lot of that is happening.”

The board said in an emailed statement Monday it kept the membership informed throughout the process, but that “to allay any unfounded concerns about the selection of (Troyer), the board is taking this opportunity to remind the members about the selection process.”

The executive director was chosen using “generally accepted human resources practices … and also complied with confidential hiring requirements,” according to the statement.

“We notified the community about the open position through an e-blast to the members and a press release to the general public.”

The board stated a five-member search committee chose people to interview from a pool of 27 applicants.

“Once (Troyer) applied for the position, (Troyer) was excluded from any and all discussions and communications involving the executive director position,” the statement said. “She was among the final candidates the search committee referred to the board. Had she not been in this group, the board would not have interviewed her.”

According to Diedrich’s lawsuit, the search committee members were “a subordinate employee of a board member, a former board president, a chamber committee chairperson, and an ex-officio board member.”

The lawsuit is asking the court to order the chamber to open records to inspection and “allow copying of the records demanded at the corporation’s expense.”

Diedrich also wants the chamber to pay “costs, including reasonable attorney fees, incurred to obtain the order,” according to a copy of the filing she provided.

She said if she’s able to review the documents she’s been unable to see so far, and they show the chamber has been acting inappropriately, then it might be time to make changes to the board’s members.

“My questions originally came about because of (Troyer’s) hiring,” she said.

Diedrich emphasized she does not want a position on the board, and that the issue isn’t about her husband not being hired.

“When I was stonewalled,” she said, “that’s when more questions arose.”

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Sara Troyer begins her new job as executive director of the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce on April 4. Photo by Kelsey Baggett

Known for her work with the Maricopa Center for Entrepreneurship, Sara Troyer has been hired as the executive director of the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce. She stated she was “honored and thrilled.”

“The Maricopa community has hugely invested in, supported, and challenged me to be a better person and leader,” Troyer said. “I look forward to working alongside the Board, community leaders and our wonderful business owners to grow and develop the Chamber into a thriving and valuable resource.”

The search to replace Marla Lewis lasted two months. The chamber organized a selection committee, which compiled a list of finalists.

Troyer is a graduate of Maricopa High School and was CEO of Maricopa DECA. She moved to Maricopa 12 years ago. She studied finance and accounting at Arizona State University for two years and is pursuing nonprofit management and public administration certificates at Southern New Hampshire University.

She is the marketing and programs development director at MCE. She specializes in small business and start-up brand creation, campaign design and event and project planning.

Troyer was elected to the chamber board in January and has now submitted her formal resignation from the board. She will start as executive director on April 4.

“We look forward to Sara’s leadership and to supporting her as she steps into this new role,” chamber President Suzie Miller said.

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce

A search committee is looking for a new executive director for the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce.

After the resignation of CEO Marla Lewis on Jan. 27, the chamber’s Board of Directors took applications through Feb. 12. Chamber President Suzie Miller said the process has been turned over to the new committee and the board hopes to hire the new director this month

Chamber members are keeping the doors of the office open as much as possible during the transition.

Thursday, the monthly Chamber Breakfast is scheduled for 7 a.m. Tim Kanavel of Pinal County Economic Development and Denyse of the City of Maricopa Economic Development are guest speakers in the Ballroom at Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino.

Bernadette Russoniello has been teaching for 15 years. Submitted photo

Known as Mrs. Russ by her students, Bernadette Russoniello is in her 15th school year teaching at Maricopa High School. She teaches marketing and journalism and has developed an award-winning DECA program at MHS.

This year, she was the recipient of the Educator of the Year award at the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce Community Awards Banquet.

What is your favorite part of being an educator? Every day is different, every day is a fresh start, every day offers a challenge – the learning never stops. I love helping students get excited about an opportunity that can change their life.

What has been the highlight of your career so far? Being part of a community and working to challenge students to be an active and dynamic force in their school and community.

Why did you choose education as a career? I love school! As a kid, I would play school all the time. I would line up my stuffed animals and teach them various lessons. I would assign them homework, do all their assignments and then grade them. I turned my bookshelf into a library, making pockets, check-out cards and a mini card catalog. In high school, I did everything – sports, choir, drama, athletic training, peer mentoring, captained the science team – I couldn’t get enough learning. To the ever-lasting dismay of my family, I turned away from my medical school plans and pursued teaching.

What would be your “other career” option? Cruise director, Tahitian resort manager or National Park ranger. Hospitality and travel are a passion. I also love community, leadership and programs – so any job that incorporates those elements is a natural fit for me.

Why Maricopa? Maricopa offered me a job teaching English before I even earned my full credential. I think it was a risk that has paid off. I started at MHS when Rancho El Dorado was still pecan groves and the entire district (K-12, district office and transportation) filled the area of the current high school campus. Maricopa High School reminded me a lot of New River Elementary School – both in the buildings at the time and the staff. It simply felt like home. The incredibly affordable housing also swayed the decision for our young family.

What are the biggest challenges facing Maricopa students today? Distractions: cell phones, social media “drama” and adult responsibilities. My senior students were just telling me today they wish they had more time to “just be a kid.” These distractions force students to narrow their focus and stop dreaming.

What was the best advice you received about your own education? Learning never stops. A textbook and a college degree have an expiration date – the pace of our world and the access to information has reshaped the role of teacher from sage on the stage to guide on the side.

What advice do you give parents of schoolchildren? Autonomy. Mastery. Purpose. Let your kids have some choice about what and how they learn; make sure they have the time and support to be really great at something; expose them to opportunities to serve a purpose greater than themselves (community service and involvement).

What have your students taught you? Forgiveness is essential and judgment is dangerous. Take time to ask, “Why didn’t you do your work? Why the bad mood?” Too many assumptions take place in schools between colleagues, teachers, students, etc. Take time to hear their story.

Russoniello (left) has led the MHS DECA program to unprecedented success. Photo by Devin Carson
Russoniello (left) has led the MHS DECA program to unprecedented success. Photo by Devin Carson

Bernadette Russoniello
Title: Teacher
School: Maricopa High School
Hometown: New River, Arizona
Residence: Rancho El Dorado
Education: Bachelor of Arts in English, BA in history, Arizona State University – Barrett Honors College; post-bac Secondary Education, Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction, Arizona State University; finishing M.Ed in Educational Leadership Northern Arizona University
Family: Wonderfully supportive husband and fellow teacher Michael Russoniello, four articulate and outgoing children (Joey, Timmy, Grace and John) all attending Santa Rosa
Teaching positions held: English 9-12, U.S. History, AP Literature, AP Language, AP U.S. History, AP U.S. Government and Politics, Student Council, Marketing, Journalism plus adjunct instructor teaching Political Science, English and Education for CAC
Years in Education: 15
First job out of college: Ran a travelling day camp summer program for the Jewish Community Center the summer prior to teaching at Maricopa (2001)
Hobbies: Hiking, camping, biking, making the most of summer vacation with epic road trips (check out my Facebook!), piano and vocals (spent eight years serving as music minister at Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church)
First year with current school: 2001
Favorite subject when you were in elementary school: Reading, writing, spelling and social studies

This story appeared in the March issue of InMaricopa News.

Two new members joined the board of the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce Thursday morning.

Glenda Kelley, co-owner of Uniquely Sewn, and Sara Troyer, marketing director for Maricopa Center for Entrepreneurship were elected to fill two of the three available seats in this year’s election. Suzie Miller, owner of Suz’s Cruises, was re-elected to her place on the board.

“I think the chamber is a great organization and really helps small businesses. Our business has grown tremendously because of being part of the chamber,” Kelley said. “I wanted to be on the board to also help other businesses and help grow the chamber and keep going and make it all that it can be.”

Danielle Collazo of Adobe Blinds was selected as an alternate.

Miller chairs the chamber board.

There were seven nominees. Stepping down from the board are Maricopa Ace Hardware owner Mike Richey of and Robert Livingston, general manager of Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino.

Continuing with the board are Chris Wodka of Central Arizona College, Adam Saks of UltraStar Multi-tainment Center, Chris Cahall of American Family Insurance and Rick Swearingen of Dignity Health.

The winners were announced during the chamber’s annual meeting at Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino.

Chamber CEO Marla Lewis reviewed the chamber’s activities during 2015.

Looking forward, Saks introduced the chamber’s Classic 100 Golf Bash, which he said will change the way the chamber raises its funds.

The event is set for Feb. 20 at Top Golf, and organizers are seeking up to 48 participants to hit 100 golf balls each.

“This program works. This program can’t miss,” Saks said. “You’re going to ask your family and friends to sponsor you at a dollar a ball, and you’re going to hit 100 balls.”

The idea is for each participant to find sponsors to pledge a certain amount of money for each ball hit. One hundred golf balls at $1 each hit by 48 players would amount to $4,800. At $5 per ball, the total would be $24,000. A single player could raise $2,500 by drumming up enough sponsors to equal $25 per golf ball.

Sponsors can also donate a flat fee.

Saks said: “If everybody in this room does it and you maybe get $10 to $15 a person by the time you’re done, we will raise $40,000 free and clear that will go into the chamber account, and none of you will ever have to be asked again to contribute anything other than your dues.”

The Chamber of Commerce will present its annual Community Awards at the Elements Event Center on Jan. 23. Photo by William Lange

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce’s annual Community Awards Banquet is scheduled for Jan. 23 at Elements Event Center. Cocktail hour starts at 5:30 p.m.

Nominees

WAZ Business of the Year: InMaricopa, Orbitel Communications and Sun Life Family Health Center.

Small Business of the Year (10 employees or fewer): James A. Chaston, CPA, PLC, Suz’s Cruises and Uniquely Sewn

Sonny Dunn Citizen of the Year: Eric Lacz, Patty Robinson and Courtny Tyler

Renate Chamberlin Volunteer of the Year: Tracy Davis, Jim Irving and Jim Shoaf.

Educator of the Year: Chris McDonald, Lauren Miller and Bernadette Russoniello.

Civil Servant of the Year: Karen S. Fierro, grants director for Ak-Chin Indian Community; Richard Clore, commander for Maricopa Police Department; and Christian Price, mayor.

Nonprofit of the Year: Maricopa Center for Entrepreneurship, Mountain View Church/Food Bank and The Streets Don’t Love You Back.

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce

The Maricopa Chamber of Commerce has seven candidates running for three open seats on the chamber board. Voting will continue until Dec. 15

“We have seven awesome candidates and we’re very excited about that,” chamber of commerce Chief Executive Officer Marla Lewis said. “The chamber board is basically our leadership. They’re the ones that set the strategic direction for the chamber and oversee all the financial movements. So, for us, it’s important to have a good board.”
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Suzie Miller is the owner of Maricopa travel agency Suz’s Cruises, and the only incumbent board member running in this year’s election.

“We’ve come a long way as a chamber and we’re going in the right direction,” Miller said. “Our 300 members are seeing a lot of positive changes in the chamber and I want to help wherever I can. I have served on the board for the last three years, and my goal is to move the chamber forward.”
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Glenda Kelley owns Uniquely Sewn in Maricopa and has been a member of the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce since 2009.

“I have been in Maricopa since before it was Maricopa,” Kelley said. “I have a lot to offer, and I love the local businesses. I’m a small business owner myself, so I know the issues facing small businesses. I don’t want to be on the board for the title, I want to impact my community.”
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John Schurz is the president and general manager of Orbitel Communications and Western Broadband Inc.’s Arizona cable properties.

“I have been really impressed with the momentum of the current board and I want to help,” Schurz said. “It’s important to have a strong board. The chamber helps with retaining the current business in the area, but it also serves as a tool to bring new businesses in. That is the goal for the city as a whole, and I think I could help.”
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Danielle Collazo is the owner of Adobe Blinds in Maricopa, moving to Arizona from New Jersey in 2005.

“I want to bring more awareness for local businesses to be part of the chamber,” Collazo said. “I feel it’s important to be part of the chamber and be more involved. It’s how you get your name out there and build trust to get more people involved with local businesses.”
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Sara Troyer is the marketing director at the Maricopa Center for Entrepreneurship and specializes in branding, imaging consultation, campaign development, and design.

“Because I work at MCE, I feel our values closely align with the values of the chamber,” Troyer said. “I think it’s the chamber is in a good position to bring in new and young businesses to the area. I’d like to help the chamber expand its local business reach.”
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Tami Johnson is a current member of the Chamber Ambassador Committee and started a networking group for new chamber members.

“From years in Corporate America to owning a trucking company and child development center to the last 10 years as small business specialist for LegalShield, my background is in small business,” Johnson said. “I believe small business is what stimulates the economy. Maricopa is developing into a strong city. I’d love to be a part of the Maricopa Chamber Board to help support this community in that continuation to build and grow.”
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Angie Groeneveld is the Director of Hospitality Operations at Harrah’s Ak-Chin and has been for the last 11 years. She is often involved with planning and executing chamber and community events and has served on the Chamber Ambassador Committee for the last three years. Groenweld will look to keep building on the value and expertise she has provided throughout her career so far.

This story appeared in the December issue of InMaricopa News.

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce CEO Marla Lewis

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Marla Lewis stopped by our InMaricopa studio to discuss the chamber’s recent move to the Maricopa Business Center, upcoming board member election and upcoming awards ceremony.

The chamber board is the governing body that sets the strategic direction for the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce. They also handle the money and set the events for the chamber to participate with in the community. A change in the regime will have a direct affect on the city of Maricopa.

“For us, it’s very important to have a good board,” Lewis said. “It’s also important for us to have a board comprised of small business owners as well as large business owners. I really think we have a good mix of that, but it’s important to keep that stability between there.”

The chamber will close out the board member election on Dec. 15. There are seven candidates running for three vacant positions on the board. The newly elected members of the board will serve until 2019.

View Gallery Despite operating in the area for nearly two years, Oxi-Fresh officially became part of the Maricopa community during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce Thursday night. Currently, local Oxi-Fresh chain owner David Knapp services homes ranging from Mesa to Sun City West. He and his son-in-law David Wedel have been serving the residents of Maricopa for nearly two years. However, since Wedel has relocated to the area and Knapp would like to expand Oxi-Fresh’s presence in the city, the time was right. Knapp got involved with Oxi-Fresh because it

Despite operating in the area for nearly two years, Oxi-Fresh officially became part of the Maricopa community during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce Thursday night.

Currently, local Oxi-Fresh chain owner David Knapp services homes ranging from Mesa to Sun City West. He and his son-in-law David Wedel have been serving the residents of Maricopa for nearly two years. However, since Wedel has relocated to the area and Knapp would like to expand Oxi-Fresh’s presence in the city, the time was right.

Knapp got involved with Oxi-Fresh because it provided a “point of distinction” to separate itself from other products. His business steadily grew through Mesa and the West Valley, but he turned his eyes to Maricopa when he saw a lack of competitors in the area.

“There are several points of distinction that our carpet cleaning system sets itself apart, particularly in Arizona,” Knapp said.

The Oxi-Fresh carpet cleaning system uses less water than most carpet cleaners, so the area affected by the products tends to dry faster. Knapp sees that as a significant advantage in the Arizona markets. The products used by Oxi-Fresh are also considered to be “green” by Environmental Protection Agency standards, so his cleaning system does go along with Maricopa’s desire to be environmentally friendly.

“Our whole system has the EPA seal of being all green,” Knapp said. “So those are some of the distinctions I saw here with this particular product, as well as the customer service.”

Currently, Knapp operates his business with his son and son-in-law. The business has four working trucks, and Knapp’s hope is to expand to the point of needing all four operating at the same time.