Your Chamber at Work - February 5, 2024




Have you ever dreamed of starting your own business, creating a unique company that fulfills a passion? Many of us have likely envisioned achieving this goal at one time or another. Those innovators who do launch small business endeavors must take a leap of faith and embrace the unknown in creating distinctive products and services. The KC Chamber’s Small Business Celebration grew from an admiration of their commitment to long hours, sleepless nights, and community service.

Our Celebration is a series of events that allow people and companies to show support for the small business community within the Kansas City region. It is recognized as one of the largest Chamber small business celebrations in the United States, and results in a highly competitive selection of Top 10 Small Businesses as well as the coveted Mr. K Award, named for Ewing Kauffman, revered Kansas City entrepreneur and philanthropist.

This annual celebration begins in January with an all-call for submissions for Small Business Superstars. Today is the deadline, so submit those business names now. These for-profit companies do not already need to be Chamber members to be recognized for their stellar contributions.

The next phase of the celebration begins Tuesday, February 6, when the application opens for Small Business of the Year and our other specialty awards. We are excited to introduce a new award this year, the Luminary Arts & Creative Small Business Award, which will celebrate the vibrancy and entrepreneurial ambitions that exist in our regional arts and culture sector.

Our Small Business Celebration is a favored event in the business community, so I encourage you to take a few minutes to learn more about the full scope of this recognition program, and all the awards that honor the hard work and dedication of Kansas City’s small business community.


DEI professionals, Human Resources leaders, and other industry managers and executives looking to discover real solutions to building inclusive organizational environments that inspire cultures of belonging are invited to take their learning to a new level of mastery with “Strategies for Promoting and Fostering a World-Class Culture of Inclusion.”

This 16-month program is led by Dr. Andrea Hendricks, Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer at Authentico, and Dr. Shirley Davis, President of SDS Global Enterprises, who are global thought leaders in diversity, equity, and inclusion. The inaugural in-person cohort session begins this March and is limited to 30 diverse participants. Come learn more about program at a free informational session on February 7 from 9 to 10 a.m. by registering here . Questions can also be emailed to Greg Valdovino, our Vice President of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, at .


Come for coffee and conversation while learning about a wellness center focused on helping you achieve your fullest potential on Friday, February 23 from 8:30-10 a.m. The Laya Center is a holistic wellness destination located at 1814 Oak St. in downtown Kansas City that was founded by NFL veteran Joe Mays' wife, Toyia. She founded this “herban oasis” after an extended effort to restore her husband’s health in the latter years of his career. Neighborhood Networking guests will discover more about the wellness techniques The Laya Center uses to realign the mind, body, soul, and spirit to elevate and propel people to achieve their highest abilities. Attendance for Chamber members is free or $15 for non-members. Learn more and register here !

Nearly 200 people have already registered to attend the Friday, February 9, Neighborhood Networking at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum (1616 E. 18th St., Kansas City, MO)! We look forward to seeing many of you at this world-renowned site located in the heart of the historic 18th and Vine district. If you haven’t already done so, click here to register! Thanks to the KC Chamber's 2024 Neighborhood Networking Sponsors: Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas CityDelta DentalSouthwest AirlinesUMB, and Unbound.


The Women’s Chamber Network of the Kansas City Kansas Chamber of Commerce, in collaboration with the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, invites you to attend "Family Friendly Workplaces" on Tuesday, February 13, from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn (520 Minnesota Ave., Kansas City, KS) for an informative session on Family-Friendly Workplaces. This is an essential session for HR professionals, business owners, managers, legal counsel, and anyone interested in creating a more inclusive and family-oriented workplace.

Recent legislative developments such as the PUMP Act and the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act have raised questions about compliance and best practices among businesses. Gain valuable knowledge and practical tools necessary to ensure compliance, enhance your company's reputation, and create a workplace that values and supports the needs of employees and their families. Learn more and register by clicking here .


The Ninth Annual Health KC Breakfast and Vendor Expo on March 6 will welcome an expected 200 attendees who will spend time learning from companies on a wealth of topics in an expanded vendor expo focused on “Where’s Wellness?” Guests will discover innovative ideas they can take back to the office for implementation as outstanding examples from each pillar of certification: Personal Health Resources, Psychosocial Work Environment, Enterprise Community Involvement and Work Environment. The vendor expo will be open before and after the program. Join us to network with wellness professional and wellness-focused companies, and to launch the 2024 Workplace Wellness Certification. Find more details and register here !