Sunday, December 28, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

As Chamber looks to the future, new CEO mirrors its goals

YanceyW

Matt Yancey has been hired as the Davis Chamber of Commerce's new chief executive officer. Sue Cockrell/Enterprise photo

By
From page A1 | August 10, 2014 |

It goes without saying, but then sometimes it needs to be said: Businesses are run by people. And people like to be listened to.

Matt Yancey, Davis Chamber of Commerce’s CEO in waiting, knows this small-town touch from his experience with the Sacramento Metro Chamber’s efforts to recruit, retain and expand businesses of all sizes throughout the valley region.

“I never cease to be amazed at the reactions we get when we walk into companies, particularly microenterprises and small businesses, and we ask ‘How’s business?’ ” Yancey said earlier this week in an interview at the Chamber. “The reaction that you get in that situation is so incredibly rewarding because you’re walking in and saying you’re part of our community, we value that and we care that you are part of our community. ‘How are things going?’ That’s the foundation of it all.”

It’s also part of the foundation of a new, six-year strategy by the Chamber of Commerce to follow a handful of objectives that jointly seek to strengthen and cultivate more economic vitality — grow a more diverse and bustling local economy — through communicating effectively with its members, partnering with local educational institutions, advocating for businesses and, through it all, showing its members and those sitting on the fence that the Davis Chamber is more than worth the money to be a member.

The 2020 Prosperity Plan, as it’s called, is a year in the making and comes at a nexus point for the city and Chamber. Incoming proposals for new innovation parks around the city’s periphery and the work feeling out the potential for a joint partnership for developing the Nishi Property, in conjunction with neighboring UC Davis, city of Davis and property owners, are potentially positioning the city for economic growth in ways that haven’t been seen.

In a prepared statement, Yancey said the Davis community was the most engaging he’d encountered in his career, stretching from the nonprofit Center For Economic Development in Chico — which focused on economic development for the northern part of the state — to being a project manager at consulting firm Applied Development Economics, to his current job as Director of Business and Economic Development for the Metro Chamber.

As part of his post, Yancey gets around.

A July 1 article in the Elk Grove Citizen focused on Yancey’s organized effort — along with 40 volunteers — walk around and interview Elk Grove businesses around the city. The task updated two previous “business walks,” a key outreach service by the Metro Chamber.

“It’s vitally important, as business conditions change year in and year out,” Yancey was quoted in the Citizen. “The more frequently you could get in touch with the same businesses, that’s part of building that relationship.”

Yancey sees strengthening personal relationships with business decision-makers as being central to how the Chamber of Commerce will continue to serve its members and community.

“Connecting as much as possible with the businesses that make up the business community, demonstrating that you, as an economic developer, a Chamber leader, a city leader, that you value their contribution to the community, that they are in your mind an important part of the community, that you have a vested interest in helping them achieve their goals,” he said in an interview. “… It’s the fundamental thing you need to do.”

Yancey’s first day with the Chamber of Commerce is Aug. 26. Until then, CEO Kemble Pope is executing the ideas of the Chamber’s 15-member board of directors. Pope often has been a fixture at City Hall, making sure the business community is represented when issues arise that could affect it.

In a June message from the Chamber, its leadership said Pope, in his three years as CEO, had strengthened the financials of the Chamber, further partnered with local and regional organizations, launched initiatives to improve the local economy and become an active voice in local and regional public policy. All this in what Chamber leaders called in a Saturday statement a “crucial transition.”

Pope wrote that he plans to stay in Davis and looks forward “to many years of community involvement.”

“With Matt’s broad experience, commitment to collaboration and existing professional relationships in Davis, I am confident that, in passing the baton, our continued momentum and quest for excellence will be maintained,” Pope wrote in the statement released Saturday.

Rose Cholewinski, who served on the Chamber selection committee that chose Yancey and is a 2012 past Chamber president, said in an email that Yancey will keep the Chamber’s “momentum going as Kemble steps away from the position.”

“As the Director of Business and Economic Development for the Metro Chamber, I believe he brings enthusiasm, knowledge of our area and will provide forward thinking to our business community in his new position,” Cholewinski also wrote.

Whatever the case, Yancey will have to hit the ground running. His first public appearance as CEO will take place at a Sept. 2 Chamber luncheon that will have the influential UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi as keynote speaker.

But as Yancey says, collaboration with the university is part of collaborating with the community as a whole.

“In Davis the goal is about a prosperous and thriving and vibrant community,” he said. “There may be some disagreements along the way in terms of how we get to that goal, but we get to that goal by working together and building consensus for a plan forward.”

— Reach Dave Ryan at dryan@davisenterprise.net or call 530-747-8057. Follow him on Twitter at @davewritesnews.com

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
    Yolo makes hydrogen connection

    By Elizabeth Case | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Sacramento man convicted for 2011 bar shooting

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    Drugs, stolen car lead to women’s arrests

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

    NYC officer mourned at funeral as tensions linger

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    N. Korea uses racial slur against Obama over hack

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    AirAsia plane with 162 aboard missing in Indonesia

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Pedal around Davis on weekly bike ride

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Nominate teens for Golden Heart awards

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    USA Weekend calls it quits

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Supplies collected for victims of abuse

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Sweet success: Cancer Center helps young patient celebrate end of treatment

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Reserve tickets soon for Chamber’s Installation Gala

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Holiday hours continue at The Enterprise

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Covell Gardens hosts New Year’s Eve dance

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    UC Davis debate team wins national championship

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Portuguese breakfast set for Jan. 25

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    At the Pond: It all started with kayaking on Putah Creek

    By Jean Jackman | From Page: A5 | Gallery

     
    Find the first cabbage white butterfly, and win a pitcher

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A6 | Gallery

     
    Does pre-eclampsia raise autism risk?

    By Phyllis Brown | From Page: A6

    Long will talk about value of hedgerows for adjacent farms

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6 | Gallery

     
    It’s a wonderful life — and a wonderful state

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8 | Gallery

    College sees benefits in loan guarantees

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

     
    Tickets for New Year’s Eve party going fast

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12

    .

    Forum

    This cat is on life No. 7

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B4

     
     
    It was a busy, black-eye year for disease control

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

    Say thanks to the caregivers

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Commission’s list needs vetting

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Rifkin’s statement is offensive

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    Bombing is not the answer

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

    Just Us in Davis: Despair and hope for the new year

    By Jonathan London | From Page: A10

     
    Cuba policy changes highlight a momentous opportunity

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

    Writer’s arguments fall flat

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A11

     
    .

    Sports

    Kings cruise past Sharks

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

     
    Lady Blue Devils top Tigers to reach Ram Jam title game

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    DHS boys get good film in tournament loss

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Sacramento survives Knicks in OT

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Sports briefs: Republic FC to host camp series

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

     
    College bowl roundup: Sun Bowl goes to the Sun Devils

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B10 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    Rob White: Davis tech community is growing

    By Rob White | From Page: A9

     
    Yolo County real estate sales

    By Zoe Juanitas | From Page: A9

    First Northern adds Peyret to agribusiness loan team

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Kaiser’s trauma center in Vacaville earns verification

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    .

    Obituaries

    Ruth Allen Barr

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Charles ‘Bud’ Meyer

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Sunday, December 28, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B8