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Chamber Connects with Peer Communities at ACCE Convention

Elizabeth Cromwell (Charlottesville) meets Elizabeth Cromwell (Oklahoma City) at #ACCE2019
Elizabeth Cromwell (Charlottesville) meets Elizabeth Cromwell (Oklahoma City) at #ACCE2019

Chamber President & CEO Elizabeth Cromwell attended the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) annual meeting in July to learn about emerging trends and best practices in the chamber industry and to network with peer communities.

Among the most valuable presentations she attended were:

Health Insurance

This presentation discussed chamber efforts to create self-insured multiple employer plans, partnerships with faith-based medical cost-sharing programs and regulatory and legal requirements in an ever-changing health insurance market. One of the presenters was Eddie McBride, CEO of the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce. Cromwell was able to introduce herself and thank him for the gift of steaks as a result of the NCAA final championship chamber bet!

Missional Investment

The Charleston (SC) Metro Chamber of Commerce explained how they use missional investment by the business community (in addition to member dues)  to support workforce development, transportation infrastructure and attainable housing.


This presentation described how chambers can bring businesses and k-12 education systems to the same table for shared goals and workforce outcomes.

Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

This session evaluated the effectiveness of entrepreneurial ecosystems, driven in large part by the  Boulder (CO) Chamber and the Boulder Economic Council.

Cromwell also attended the University Communities Council meeting, which is an idea-sharing forum for Chamber CEO's in communities where economic development is heavily driven by major universities.

Charlottesville has not participated in this national forum in the recent past, and many chambers nationwide were eager to discuss our community and seek opportunities for collaboration.