The West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to working with all members of the community to increase the economic advancement of Hispanic owned businesses and to assist the professional growth of Hispanic business leaders in West Michigan.
The West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce was founded in 2003 by a group of Hispanic business leaders and business owners with the goal to support the economic advancement of the Hispanic owned businesses and to assist in the professional growth of Hispanic business leaders in West Michigan.
At first, like many grassroots organizations, the Chamber relied on other established entities for support. Davenport University provided physical space to run office duties. At the same time, the Board hired the first part-time executive director to manage the growing demand for services to members. In 2008 the Chamber reached an important milestone by moving to its own office space at 1251 Century Avenue in Grand Rapids and hired a full time Executive Director and a part-time Membership Coordinator who managed the day-to-day operations of the Hispanic Chamber.
During the year of 2010, Grand Rapids Community College offered space to host the monthly membership meetings. Entrepreneurial workshops where offered in Spanish in partnership with the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center to Hispanic business owners in the West Michigan community.
In recent years the Hispanic Chamber has seen unprecedented levels of growth, both in membership and attendance at our signature events. Membership at the Hispanic Chamber continues to grow on a monthly basis, as new members benefit from the outstanding services provided by the Chamber. The annual Awards Banquet continues to establish itself as the premier event for West Michigan business community, with recent attendance close to 400 guests. With its many successes, the Hispanic Chamber’s leadership and staff continue to raise the bar and challenge themselves to offer the very best in programming and events.
Another change came to the organization in late September of 2013; the chamber moved offices to a new location at 1167 Madison Ave. SE in Grand Rapids, MI; close to the high Hispanic-populated communities. After growing with another employee, the need for more space was inevitable and the Chamber now sits at 2007 S Division Ave. in the heart of Burton Heights, with a Hispanic population of almost 50% in the surrounding neighborhood.
Currently, we partner with several companies and organizations around Grand Rapids, Holland and Kalamazoo that host our monthly membership meetings with the purpose of having a business professionals network and connect with each other. Also, in a partnership with the City of Grand Rapids, last year we started a program in Spanish focused exclusively on Hispanic business owners. The idea of this program is to provide education in areas like accounting, human resources, strategic planning, etc. with the ultimate goal of helping these businesses develop and be successful. Over the past 14 years, there has been great community involvement from many business professionals who have contributed to the success of the Chamber by playing a lead role as members, volunteers and serving on the Board of Directors. With its many successes, the Hispanic Chamber’s leadership and staff continue to raise the bar and challenge themselves to offer the very best in programming and events to serve the community. To those of you that have put you contribution toward a better community, the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce proudly says Thank you!
The WMHCC is poised to meet the challenges of the 21st Century through the celebration of diversity, which will unite the Hispanic community around its common goals and values. Our current Board of Directors is comprised of business leaders and business owners. as ethnically diverse as our members. The Hispanic Chamber is also recognized as the most ethnically diverse Chamber in West Michigan as it represents not only a wide variety of leaders of Hispanic descent but also African American, Asian and Caucasian business owners and corporations.
We at the Hispanic Chamber are always looking for ways to improve our services and appreciate any feedback form our members to make sure you receive the greatest return on your investment.
Goals and Community Involvement
- Increase business networking
- Facilitate trade through public and private contracting
- Access economic development programs, services, and resources
- Provide business education to members
- Support economic and cultural understanding
- Increase the involvement of the Hispanic business community in improving the social and economic climate of West Michigan
- Represent Hispanic business interests
- Increase membership on boards and commissions that have a direct impact on Hispanic-owned business
- Remain a visible part in civic-business related activities
- Network with Latino and non Latino business owners
- Educational Opportunities, workshops and seminars to help build your business and/or target the Hispanic market
- Market your products and services to other Hispanic and non Hispanic business owners
- Promote your business through MyGRpoints
Additional Member Benefits:
- Up to 20% Scholarship at Davenport University
- Discounts on advertisement through our media partners including El Informador Newspaper, El Vocero Hispano Newspaper, La Poderosa 93.3 FM Radio Station, and Sport Latino Magazine.
- Ongoing Member to Member Discounts
The West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to working with all members of the community to increase the economic advancement of Hispanic owned businesses and to assist in the professional growth of Hispanic business leaders in West Michigan.
- Advocacy: Issues and action development
- Business Service: Cost savings, revenue development, and member support
- Networking: Member business growth through connections
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