Texas Chamber of Commerce Executives heading to Nacogdoches
Posted 06 - 24 - 2010


 Nation’s oldest chamber organization sets sights on oldest town in Texas



By Kelly Daniel



Membership and Marketing Manager



Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce



 



At the end of the week, Nacogdoches will welcome an expected 300 chamber of commerce leaders and their families from across the state. The group is traveling to the Oldest Town in Texas to attend the 2010 Texas Chamber of Commerce (TCCE) annual conference, June 26-29.



 



Being chosen as the host city has nothing to do with fate or luck. Working for the privilege began almost a decade ago according to Pam Fitch, Jack Backers College Bookstore owner and former Nacogdoches Convention and Visitors Bureau executive director.



 



“Early in 2002, we discussed the benefits of hosting the conference and talked with the chamber staff about doing it, and we were able to bid at that year’s conference,” Fitch said. “We came very close several times, and I remember one year we were only a couple of votes away from getting it. But we were very determined and continued to bid year after year.”



 



The economic impact of the convention is considerable – with several local hotels to be filled to capacity and hundreds visiting for three or four days. But there’s more than the cash infused into the local economy.



 



“I was in Lubbock in 2008 when Melissa [Sanford, CVB executive director] got the message to me that they successfully brought the bid in to host the 2010 conference, and I was extremely excited. Even though I was not with the CVB, I knew what this would mean to get this group in to Nacogdoches,” Fitch said.



 



Chamber President/CEO Bruce R. Partain currently serves on the TCCE board of directors. “The competition to host this convention is fierce,” Partain said. “Every chamber executive is proud of their community, and anxious to share their town with their peers. We’ve been to many great convention sites across Texas. I know TCCE members will love Nacogdoches.”



 



Each community vying for the convention brings different attractions and resources, and each makes a stellar effort to put forth a convincing package to secure the convention.



 



"It is a remarkable tribute both to your community and to those who represented it in seeking this meeting for Nacogdoches,” Art Roberts, CEO of the state chamber association said. “Only one Texas community each year welcomes these community leaders from across the state, and as they leave your hospitality they will have seen one of the most charming communities in all of our state."



 



Sherri Skeeters Nacogdoches CVB assistant director said Nacogdoches has proved itself worthy of hosting the state’s community leaders, and “we will impress them with our charm and hospitality.”



 



“We’re always bidding against larger cities and visitors bureaus, so when Nacogdoches was chosen to host the 2010 event, it was similar to being the underdog team competing and taking home the prize,” Skeeters said.



 



From Sunday, June 27, through Tuesday, June 29, conventioneers will discuss government affairs, rural economic development, public education, survey technology and social media.



 



While visiting, conference attendees will get a glimpse of what Nacogdoches has to offer. All will have the opportunity to play in a golf tournament at Woodland Hills Golf Club, enjoy an evening of barbecue and dancing at Banita Creek Hall, a dinner theatre performance by the Millard’s Crossing Melodrama Players, poolside cocktails at the Fredonia and a tour of Nacogdoches treasures in downtown and at Millard’s Crossing Historic Village - in addition to the conference activities held at the Fredonia.



 



“I compare this event to my experiences visiting other cities on business,” Skeeters said. “Conference visitors will see what we have, and make notes about what they will want to do when they come back to visit again and again.



 



“They’ll tell others about their experience and why Nacogdoches should be on a vacation prospect list,” Skeeters said.



 



A good example of Nacogdoches hospitality is the sweet blueberry container donated by Hayter’s Mill Creek Farm that will be placed in the attendee’s hotel room along with a welcome note. Delicious blueberry oatmeal cookies provided by Pinto Pony Cookie Factory will be a nice surprise attendees will find in the conference bags, donated by TXU Energy.



 



“We’re taking every opportunity to educate them and point out these not-so-well-known facts such as Nacogdoches being the state’s top blueberry producer, and the Texas Blueberry Festival we hold on the second Saturday in June,” Skeeters said.



 



“TCCE has been looking forward to visiting Nacogdoches for its annual conference since learning of the selected venue,” Bruce Hillegeist, chairman of the state chamber association and president of Greater Tomball Area Chamber of Commerce. “We expect to learn much there (continuing education) while building upon and or developing new friendships and relationships with professionals in the chamber of commerce business across Texas.” 



Staff from the Nacogdoches CVB, Hotel Fredonia and the Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce has worked together for this opportunity to showcase Nacogdoches to the state’s chamber executives. TCCE staff have made pre-event visits and scouted the city for accommodations and points of interests that will make the visit informative and memorable for all.



 



“TCCE is appreciative of the amazing team at the Nacogdoches CVB along with Bruce Partain and his staff of the Nacogdoches Chamber of Commerce for their efforts in preparing a tremendous welcome to TCCE,” Hillegeist said.



 



"It is a remarkable tribute both to your community and to those who represented it in seeking this meeting for Nacogdoches,” Art Roberts, CEO of the state chamber association said. “Only one Texas community each year welcomes these community leaders from across the state, and as they leave your hospitality they will have seen one of the most charming communities in all of our state."



 



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About the Texas Chamber of Commerce Executives



TCCE is the oldest association for chamber professionals in the United States.



TCCE began in 1906 as the Texas Commercial Secretaries Association and changed its name to the Texas Chamber of Commerce Executives in 1978. The mission at TCCE is “to enhance and promote the professional growth and competency of chamber of commerce professionals."



TCCE is an organization of chamber executives from across the state, working together to improve the business climate in Texas, while developing ways to enhance the quality of life in the communities that they represent.



TCCE provides leadership for chamber employees through its many publications and resources. Many networking opportunities are offered including the annual conference held each summer, mini-conferences and other meetings with the purpose of bringing executives together to exchange ideas and success stories.



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