Your Chamber at Work - June 21, 2022




WE WANT GOT THE WORLD CUP! And what a thrill it was when they announced “Kansas City” as one of the host cities for the 2026 extravaganza. Kudos to Kathy Nelson of the Sports Commission and Committee Chair Katherine Holland for their leadership in securing the bid, and to the many many people who worked tirelessly on the many and varied details to make this happen.

Yes, we’re the smallest market among those announced but what we lacked in population we made up for with enthusiasm. I also believe the building blocks of the region played a role in making us competitive: the new KCI airport, downtown revitalization, world class sports facilities like Arrowhead and Children's Mercy Park, the street car, and more. All of these pieces were critical in making us competitive for this opportunity. These important infrastructure investments made along the way make us world class. Congratulations to us!

And congratulations to Chicken N Pickle – the Chamber’s Mr. K Award winner and 2022 Small Business of the Year. The award was announced last week at the luncheon culminating our annual Small Business Celebration.

Pickleball is one of the fastest growing sports in the U.S. and Chicken N Pickle’s growth has followed that same trajectory. Owner Dave Johnson founded the company in 2016 with his first location in North Kansas City. There are now six locations with more to come.

In addition to growth, Chicken N Pickle lives up to Mr. K’s other business tenets with great employee relations and strong community service. Fun fact: Ewing Kauffman presented Johnson with his Eagle Scout Award years ago. There’s a special symmetry in his receiving the Mr. K Award so many years later.

For full details on all our Small Business Award winners, click here.


There’s still time to get your tickets for this Friday’s Welcoming KC International Food Tour, June 24, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. We’re excited to partner with the Northeast Kansas City Chamber of Commerce for a taste of the restaurants along Independence Avenue, and enjoy one of the most diverse and culturally rich communities in KC. You’ll begin at 1615 Independence Avenue, where you’ll also park. For just $30 you get a wristband and trolley access that will take you along a three-mile restaurant exploration enjoying everything from samosas to enchiladas. Help support and celebrate these immigrant- and refugee-owned small businesses by registering now! This is open to everyone. Thank you to our overall Welcoming KC Program Sponsor REACH Healthcare Foundation, and our Pillar Sponsors Commerce Bank, CommunityAmerica Credit Union, Hallmark and Polsinelli. Special thanks to Kansas City University.


Join us for that great Chamber networking in a gorgeous downtown spot: Neighborhood Networking at McCownGordon Construction, Friday, June 24, 8:30 to 10 a.m. Visit their downtown KC headquarters at 850 Main to learn more about this employee-owned construction company. With offices in Kansas City, Manhattan, Wichita, and Dallas-Fort Worth, McCownGordon is building the future. Doors open at 8:30. Chamber members can register now for free; non-members are $15. The KC Chamber's 2022 Neighborhood Networking sponsors are Unbound, Bardavon Health Innovations and Kansas City Current. The KC Chamber's 2022 overall networking sponsors are Delta Dental and Mazuma Credit Union.


Join Healthy KC for the upcoming networking forum, Creating Health Equity in Our Workplaces and Our Community, Tuesday, June 28, 7:30 to 9 a.m. at Lockton, 444 W. 47th Suite 900 in Kansas City, MO. Hear from experts in health equity on how to promote and recognize diversity, equity, and inclusion within an organization. A strong internal DEI component means strong customer service. Register now and don’t miss this informative Healthy KC event, welcoming panelists from Black & Veatch, the Health Forward Foundation, and Community Health at the University of Missouri. Thanks to our Presenting Sponsor Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, and our Premier Sponsor Lockton.


Come celebrate KC’s culturally diverse business community and honor the diversity award winners at the 2022 POWER of Diversity, July 20, 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. Join us at The LEX, 300 W. 13th Street, Suite 100 in Downtown Kansas City, as we honor the 2022 Champion of Diversity Commerce Bank, the Non-Profit Champion of Diversity GEHA, and our Ace Award winners: Drew Eanes of JE Dunn Construction, Emanuel McCrainey of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, and Tiffany Willis of Children’s Mercy. That’s not all. The Marshall Project’s Ebony Reed moderates a group of KC small business owners who have found success by including people with disabilities, returning citizens, immigrants and refugees, and more into their workforce. Registration for Chamber members is $40 per ticket; $400 for a table of ten. Register here, and to learn about pricing for non-members. Thanks to our Presenting Diversity Sponsors  CommunityAmerica Credit UnionEvergy and Hallmark.