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Educate, engage and encourage

March 16, 2012

As a special interest group for business, the Mammoth Lakes Chamber of Commerce provides a host of programs and services designed to advocate for business interests, stimulating local business growth and prosperity.

The mission of the Chamber is to enhance the ability of its members to achieve success, to unite the business community, and to involve the entire community in responsibly promoting the overall economic health of Mammoth.

The Chamber recently launched two groups to further this mission: A professional women’s group (an official name is still pending) and the Young Professionals Group.

The Chamber used to have a women in business group in the past, but it slowly disappeared as members started families, moved away, or joined other groups like Rotary and Lions clubs.

But a demand and interest resurfaced and the Chamber is assisting the group to get back on its feet (or stilettos … if you want).

At its recent luncheon, a large group of professional women networked with one another, exchanged ideas, and started discussing relevant and important topics pertaining to women in business. 

Christie Osborne from Mammoth Lakes Tourism will be the group’s first guest speaker at next month’s meeting. She’ll be discussing the importance of social media in the workplace. 

The Chamber also launched a group for young professionals.

Jeremy Goico, owner and operator of Black Tie Ski Rentals, and Casey Hendrickson, director of catering/conference services at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area—both young and professional—approached the Chamber with the idea of creating a group for people like themselves. 

At first, we thought maybe the Chamber got a little group happy. Too many groups could lead to problems ... especially if they seem sort of excluding.

But, as Chamber members and supporters of our community, we checked ’em out anyway.

We went to the Young Professionals Group meeting this past Sunday at Whitebark (at the Westin) and we walked away with two prominent feelings: impressed and excited.

We walked in on the board meeting and sat and listened.

They were young—most probably in their 20s and 30s—and they really were professional—which, to be frank, was surprising.

These are not our typical WPODs or your boozers and cruisers.

These are not our typical ski/snowboard bums who come for a season, “live it up,” and then move away and on with their lives.

These are local community members. Some own and operate their own business; others work for a local business; but all take their careers seriously. They are all residents and Mammoth Lakes advocates.

The Young Professionals Group board talked about a variety of things: politics, athletics, education, growth, maintenance, upcoming issues facing the Town, etc.

It was nice to know these youngsters read the paper.

It’s even nicer to see these youngsters care about our town.

These young professionals have energy, have ideas, and have the desire to do something positive in Mammoth Lakes.

Although this meeting we attended was only the second for the newly established organization, the group wants to make things relevant for the younger generation. They want to educate, engage, and encourage young professionals. 

They want to contribute and positively affect the future of our town.

As they should.

It’s their future.

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