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Your Chamber At Work - May 1, 2017


To be resilient means you’re able to bounce back when faced with stress or pressure. And the KC Chamber wants to help adults and children struggling with emotional issues like depression, anxiety, stress, trauma, and the like.
On Saturday, May 13, the Chamber will host a Resiliency Rally, connecting people with local resources with a huge dollop of fun. Sesame Street in Communities is our sponsor, and they’re sending Cookie Monster to walk around and get hugs and photos. Here’s Cookie Monster’s special invitation for everyone. (I’ve never had a chance to introduce a Sesame Street character before!)
The Rally is free, with free food and transportation, and featured entertainment like H3 Healthy Hip Hop and Captain Encouragement. It’s set for Saturday, May 13, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Arrowhead Stadium. The event is part of the Chamber’s Healthy KC initiative, with a goal of building a resilient KC. Click here for more information.
And another event to put on your calendar:  the second annual GoGlobalKC Luncheon, Thursday, May 11, 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at The Gallery, 61 East 14th Street, KCMO. We’ll focus on the pros of free trade, with former Vermont Governor Howard Dean, a strong proponent of free trade. You’ll also get an update on the new Export Concierge service, established about a year ago, that helps companies new to international business – or expanding into new overseas markets – navigate the trade process. Click ­here to register or for more information.



This week, on Thursday, May 4, Commerce Bank is presenting the KC Chamber's Top 10 CEO Panel Breakfast. You can meet the top executives of the 10 prestigious small businesses that are vying for the Mr. K Award. It is always fascinating to hear the stories of their successes and adversities direct from the company leaders. There is sure to be a tip or a best practice that you can take back to the office and use for your own business. There are a few seats still available for the breakfast at a cost of $30 for Chamber members; $40 for non-members. The breakfast will take place at the Kansas City Downtown Marriott, 200 W 12th St., from 7:30 to 9 a.m.  Please contact Laura Dryden at or (816) 374-5444 if you'd like us to save you a seat.
Then on Tuesday May 16, the KC Chamber’s annual Small Business Awards Luncheon will be presented by Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. In addition to the Mr. K Award being presented to the KC Chamber's Small Business of the Year, our Entrepreneur Award, Diverse Business Award, Legacy of Kansas City, and International Small Business of the Year Award winners will be announced. The Small Business Celebration starts in October each year with nominations, and ends the following May at this luncheon. It's our 31st year of honoring small businesses. The Awards Luncheon will take place at the Westin Crown Center Hotel, One East Pershing Road, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tickets and a limited number of tables (10 seats each) are still available; cost is $45 per seat for Chamber members and $55 for non-members.
Thank you to the following companies that are giving extra support to the KC Chamber's small business efforts. Overall Small Business Sponsors for 2017 are Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, and KCP&L. Executive Level Sponsor is Google Fiber. Partner Level Sponsors include Arvest BankDST, and Union Station. Associate Level Sponsors include American Century InvestmentsBank of Blue ValleyCommunityAmerica Credit UnionKansas City ChiefsMazumaStaples AdvantageUMB, and US Bank. The Candidates' Showcase Presenting Sponsor was Bank Midwest. Top 10 Announcement Reception was presented by Enterprise Bank & Trust.  and Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is the Awards Luncheon Presenting Sponsor this year. The Kansas City Star is Print Media Sponsor for the KC Chamber's Small Business Celebration.

Everything is fresh at Seasons 52 on the Country Club Plaza at 340 Ward Parkway. They're also hosting the KC Chamber's members for Morning Schmooze on May 19. The grill and wine bar at Seasons 52 offers a seasonally-inspired light menu. Show up for Schmooze at 8:30 am on May 19 and find out how they interpret spring's transition into summer. Morning Schmooze is free networking for Chamber members and $15 for non-members. 2017 networking sponsors are Mazuma, Sprint, and University Health, with Morning Schmooze sponsored by Ruckus Creative Group. Please register online.

Don't miss your chance to participate in the Chamber's 2017 Diversity and Inclusion Regional Business Survey. When you take our 12-15 minute confidential survey, we will develop a better understanding of your current workplace emphasis on diversity (a lot or a little, all information is valid and appreciated.) This is the first of what will be an annual survey, and includes all sizes of companies and all types of D&I practices. The KC Chamber and their partners are hoping to build a regional assessment of best practices and available tools for all companies looking to improve their D&I efforts. Click here to take the survey.
In addition, if you choose to provide an email address with your completed survey, you will automatically be entered into a prize drawing which includes two round trip tickets for U.S. destinations on Southwest Airlines, and four tickets to a Kansas City Royals or Sporting Kansas City game, dates TBD.
Thank you to our survey partners, including the Asian American Chamber of Commerce, Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, Heartland Black Chamber of Commerce, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Mid-America Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, and Nonprofit Connect.

Kansas City Missouri Mayor Sly James’ signature youth employment program is one program connecting youth to summer jobs and internships. The Hire KC Youth program has expanded beyond City Hall into an innovative year-long, citywide initiative in order to: 1) centralize access to jobs and internships for all students, 2) effectively connect youth to workforce pathways, and 3) help Kansas City measure citywide impact and youth hiring through its clearinghouse and education-to-industry collaboration. Pledge to hire KC youth today, and find out more about Summer 2017 and beyond at
Another option would be the Kauffman School Corps for summer 2017. The program places high school students at a variety of organizations in Kansas City to complete a paid internship. Students who intern through the Kauffman School Corps develop the skills and competencies necessary to succeed in college and beyond, connect with influential leaders in the community to broaden their worldview, and gain pride in their hometown so they are inspired to return to Kansas City as leaders in their community after college graduation. In addition, each student’s compensation for the summer will help fund a 529 College Savings Account.
There are three ways you can help:
  • Please sponsor and host a Kauffman School student intern at your organization.
  • If you do not feel you have the ability to host a summer intern but are committed to helping students have enriching summer opportunities, please consider supporting the program by donating $2,000 to sponsor an intern who will be placed at another local business or nonprofit.
  • Please forward this to a colleague who would be interested in sponsoring and hosting an intern.
If you are interested in supporting the Kauffman School Corps program, please reach out to Ashley Lucas at for more information.