Your Chamber at Work - January 8, 2019


I hope your holidays were filled with love and laughter and your new year filled with new opportunities and new success.

As I look ahead at the new KC Chamber year, there are a number of items on our 2019 agenda:

Pre-K for KC: One of the Chamber’s Big 5 goals is making sure Kansas City kids are kindergarten-ready. Too many of them aren’t – which is why our Board voted to support the pre-K proposal on the upcoming April ballot in Kansas City, Missouri. (The measure calls for a 3/8 cent sales tax to fund quality early childhood education throughout the city.) Not only is it the right thing to do, it’s also preparing our kids for tomorrow’s workforce.

We’ve been presenting the case on pre-K for several months now. If you’d like to schedule a presentation at your company or organization, please contact the Chamber’s Pam Ronfeldt. The presentations aren’t a campaign spiel – they focus on the importance of pre-K.

Inclusive development and Opportunity Zones: Working with the Urban Neighborhood Initiative (another Big 5) and the Kauffman Foundation, we’re creating a prospectus for those interested in investing in the city’s urban neighborhoods. We want to ensure that those developments are respectful of the neighborhoods and their true needs.

KCI Airport: We’ll continue to advocate for progress on the new single terminal, as well as other transportation needs.

Regional cooperation: With two new governors, both of whom understand the importance of Kansas City to their states’ economies, we’ll be working on strategies to bring the two states together and grow our region.



On Friday, January 11, the KC Chamber is pleased to present Neighborhood Networking in Merriam, hosted by IKEA. We’ll meet in the third floor food court at IKEA, 6000 IKEA Way, from 8:30 to 10 a.m. (Parking in the front of the building is advised.) Enjoy coffee and a hot breakfast while you visit and connect. Bring your gift cards if you’ve got them. Bring your business cards for sure to share with your new colleagues and get into the morning prize drawing. Stick around afterward to browse furniture and housewares of the finest budget-friendly Scandinavian design. IKEA has more than 400 stores and 160,000 employees worldwide and we are fortunate to have them in our community. The KC Chamber’s 2019 Networking Sponsors are Mazuma, SS&C/DST and Sprint. Neighborhood Networking Sponsors are Andrews McMeel Universal, and Spectrum Reach. Neighborhood networking is free for KC Chamber members and $15 for non-members. Online registration is available here. For more information, contact Brandon Krekel at



Get some great ideas to implement at your company to make your workplace healthier in 2019! On January 23 Healthy KC, a partnership of the KC Chamber and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, will be presenting healthy local companies their certification awards for 2018. You can meet these certified companies and network with health-focused vendors at the expo to get excited about improving your healthy workplace culture. You can also learn more about the Healthy KC mentoring program. Join us at One Arrowhead Drive from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. The breakfast is $25 for Chamber members and $35 for non-members. Online registration is open. For more information about the event, contact Madison Rich at (816) 374-5434. Presenting sponsor is Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City. Foundation sponsors include Health Forward Foundation and REACH Healthcare Foundation. Corporate Champion sponsor is AdventHealth; Advocate sponsors are CommunityAmerica Credit Union, SS&C/DST, H&R Block, HCA Midwest Health, Saint Luke’s Health System, and the University of Kansas. Supporter sponsors include CBIZ, Children’s Mercy, Garmin, Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, KVC Health Systems, Mosaic Life Care, and Staples Business Advantage.



On Thursday, February 28, you can participate in a thoughtful discussion about building resilience in yourself, your workforce and in our community at the 2019 Diversity and Inclusion Summit, presented by Project Equality and the KC Chamber. The Summit will take place from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Pierson Auditorium on the campus of the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Keynote speaker Dr. Joy DeGruy is known for her inspirational seminars on culture, race relations, and contemporary social issues. She’s recently authored a book called Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome – America’s Legacy of Enduring Injury and Healing. The book lays the groundwork for understanding how the past has influenced the present and opens up the discussion of how we can use the strengths we have gained to heal. (Check out this video with Dr. DeGruy here.) In addition, the morning’s agenda will include local response by The Reverend Starsky Wilson and Dr. Susan Wilson. The Diversity and Inclusion Summit is sponsored by REACH Healthcare Foundation. Online registration is available now with both student and partner pricing. For more information about this event, please email



Meet us in Raytown for Business After Hours on Wednesday, January 16 from 4-6 p.m. at Extreme Grand Prix. This KC Chamber member is home to some of the fastest go karts in the area and can fulfill your need for speed. They have indoor electric go karts that zip around no matter the weather outside and Extreme Grand Prix wants you to know they are a thrill-seekers destination from all over the metro area, located at 6731 Blue Ridge Blvd, Raytown MO 64133. This event is $5 for KC Chamber members and $25 for non-members and includes appetizers and an hour of free racing. A cash bar will be available. Register now and contact Brandon Krekel if you have any questions. 2019 Networking Sponsors include Mazuma, Sprint and SS&C/DST.