Congratulations to the Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce on its 100th anniversary.

A century ago today, civic leaders from our community banded together to form the local chamber, which is still thriving all these years later.

It is remarkable that an organization founded in 1919 is stronger today than it’s ever been.

We urge businesses that have not already done so to join the local chamber of commerce in this special year.

When consumers know that a small business is a member of the local chamber of commerce, they are 44 percent more likely to think favorably of it and 63 percent more likely to purchase goods or services from the company in the future, according to studies by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

The chamber’s most fundamental mission is to generate more business activity for the community. The chamber initiates more business-to-business commerce and more opportunities for networking and connecting local professionals than is available through most other local organizations.

“The vast majority of members will tell you they get a lot out of being part of the chamber,” said C. Wayne Mitchell, president and CEO of the local chamber. “Like any organization you join, if you elect not to get involved it has limited value to you.”

We’re also pleased to see how involved our chamber is in politics. The group visits Austin every legislative session and spoke out in support of Nacogdoches ISD’s $77.9 bond proposal last November.

Such was a rarity among organizations until the 1970s, Mitchell said.

The local chamber, however, began political advocacy as early as 1921.

The chamber is a great organization that does a lot for our community and local businesses. So why wait to become involved? They’ve been waiting 100 years for you.

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