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Dunwoody chamber plans new leadership program
by Nicole Dow
January 09, 2013 09:22 AM | 2101 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Samantha M. Shal<br>
From left, Dunwoody Chamber of Commerce vice chair Paula Owens, executive director Debbie Fuse and chairman Don Boyken at the Chamber office.
Staff / Samantha M. Shal
From left, Dunwoody Chamber of Commerce vice chair Paula Owens, executive director Debbie Fuse and chairman Don Boyken at the Chamber office.
With businesses in Dunwoody bringing in about 70 percent of the city’s revenue, plans for the Dunwoody Chamber of Commerce this year include programs and events aimed to support business leaders and strengthen the city’s commercial sector, said Don Boyken, chairman of the chamber’s board of directors.

A new mission for the chamber this year is to establish a Leadership Dunwoody program.

“Leadership programs throughout the state are fairly helpful in working with business leaders in helping them get ties into the local, regional and state levels … and it helps them become more connected and more productive,” Boyken said.

Plans are still in the works, but he said the chamber hopes to model the program off of Leadership Sandy Springs, Leadership DeKalb and Leadership Fulton programs.

The chamber will also help develop the leaders of tomorrow by expanding the business and education link in the city, both at the K-12 grade level and the college level, Boyken said.

Another focus of the chamber this year is to continue to work with the city to attract more businesses to Dunwoody.

“[The city has] over 8 million-square-feet of class-A office space, and over 4.3 million-square-feet of retail space,” Boyken said.

“We are a leader in the southeast as far as retail and office space. Our role is to get that message out.”

The chamber also wants to increase awareness of the businesses currently operating in the city. This summer, the chamber hopes to bring a wine tasting and restaurant event to Dunwoody in collaboration with the convention and visitors’ bureau.

Other events planned this year include the monthly Coffee Connection program and the Business Expo in May.

“Our focus is always to continue to provide better services to our members,” Boyken said.

Roughly 18 percent of total businesses in the city are chamber members, he added.

“That is very positive in that most cities, including the cities of Atlanta and Sandy Springs, have somewhere around 6 percent,” he explained.

One such service to benefit members is the member-to-member program.

All owners and employees of member businesses can enjoy discounts at participating member businesses.

In addition to members benefiting from the perks of discounts at local shops and restaurants, the program is designed to increase the amount of business at participating locations, Boyken said.

He added the chamber is working on a mobile phone version of its website so chamber members and their employees can check the discounts from participating businesses from their mobile devices.

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