2024 1st Quarter Update

2024 started with changes to YOUR Chamber programming, based on member feedback. It also included the annual release of the Legislative Agenda, which guides our work advocating for business-friendly legislation and policies. 

Read on to see your membership at work.



We started the year with adjustments to programs offered by YOUR Union County Chamber based off of member feedback from the 2023 Annual Member Survey. 

The first event was an expanded State of YOUR Chamber luncheon. The luncheon highlighted the work we’ve been engaged in along with a look ahead at what to expect for 2024. Nearly 100 Chamber members and business leaders attended the luncheon at Rolling Hills Country Club.

Chamber President and CEO Pat Kahle, along with volunteer leaders from the Chamber Board and Chamber committees presented the information which included full results from the 2023 Annual Member Survey. 

We are proud to say that survey respondents rated YOUR Chamber 4.8 out of 5. in the survey. You can read more details of the Membership Survey here

Trent Turner, Dr. Rhett Brown, Pat Kahle, Dr. Maria Pharr, David Smith

Workforce Development

Workforce Development Task Force Chair Trent Turner shared an update on the Chamber’s efforts in support of policies, programs, and initiatives that provide a trained, available workforce for all business and industries including future expansion in Union County.
He highlighted our work in the Middle School Speakers Bureau, Make It In Union County, as well as the success of the Chamber’s Jobs site where members can post open positions for free. 
 Public Policy Work

Public Policy Chair Dr. Rhett Brown spoke about the Chamber’s Legislative Agenda focused on advocating for business-friendly legislation and policies. 

Along with details of the Agenda, Dr. Brown shared several recent Public Policy successes around sewer capacity, expanding childcare opportunities, and reducing the tax burden for new businesses. 

Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee

2023 Co-Chair of the Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee David Smith recapped 2023 successes including the 8-week series called “Growing Your Revenue With Government Contracts”.  The Chamber partnered with South Piedmont Community College’s Small Business Center to bring experts in various topics related to government contracting. 

2024 and Beyond

Dr. Maria Pharr, 2024 Chair of the Board of Directors, gave her thoughts around what members can expect in 2024 and beyond, starting with an updated Strategic Plan. 

The Chamber began work on a 3-year Strategic Plan in 2021. The Board finalized the 2024 3-Year Strategic plan earlier this year. The plan has 3 main focus areas including:

  • » Deliver Value to Members
  • » Catalyze Business Growth
  • » Build Organizational Capacity

Chamber Board members work side-by-side with staff to champion the work we are doing to meet the strategic objectives set by our Board. 


Members told us in the Annual Survey that they wanted more opportunities to meet other business leaders and expand their professional network. 

We responded by adding a new program called AM Power Networking. These sessions are monthly (excluding July) and are focused on, you guessed it, networking. 

We have varied the days and times of this each month to ensure the most members are able to attend. You can find the entire schedule and register here.

The format for each session varies as well, between open networking where attendees have the opportunity to connect with each other in an informal setting, and Speed Networking. We host Speed Networking once a quarter. 

Members and attendees have rated the 3 previous sessions with an average of 9 out to 10 stars, and shared the following comments:

“I really like this event. It was energizing and I had many meaningful connections!” – Zulma Verdejo-Carrion, Serene Fusion, LLC


“This meeting allowed for our business to be noticed and appreciated in Indian Trail while making new partnerships and creating more awareness of our studios.” – Angela Blosser, Club Pilates Indian Trail

“The Union County Chamber AM Power Networking event was well attended, offered diversity and inclusion and provided follow-up support to additional resources. The event was well managed and beneficial on multiple levels.” Kathy A. Lamm, Mission Omega



Attendees at the Union County Chamber Legislative Agenda Breakfast


Each year, YOUR Chamber updates its Legislative Agenda to ensure it continually focuses on championing business-friendly legislation and policies. We release the Agenda at our Annual Legislative Agenda Breakfast.

2024 Legislative Agenda

The 2024 Legislative Agenda maintains the 3 core pillars of focus:

    • » The Chamber supports policies, programs, and initiatives that provide adequate, cost-effective public and private infrastructure essential for business development, growth, and prosperity throughout Union County.
    • » The Chamber supports policies, programs, and initiatives that provide a trained, available workforce for all business and industries including future expansion in Union County.
    • » The Chamber opposes taxes and regulations by any jurisdiction that hinder or interfere with business growth, development, and prosperity in Union County or that place Union County businesses at a disadvantage when competing with businesses outside Union County.

We had nearly 75 Chamber members attend the Legislative Breakfast on February 2, 2024. At the Breakfast, Public Policy Consultant Brian Francis shares the updates on the Agenda. Then, attendees have time for round-table discussions about the pillars in the Agenda. Elected officials from the State and County level are placed at each table so they can hear the comments from attendees. 

Elected Officials Reception

February 15, 2024 marked one of our largest Elected Officials Receptions yet.

Over 120 people attended the event at the Union County Agricultural Center. We invited elected officials, and those running for office in 2024 to meet with Union County locals.   Attendees at the 2024 Union County Chamber Elected Officials Reception

This annual event is free for Union County Chamber members, and open to the public. It allows voters to meet with those representing them at the Federal, State and Local levels in a relaxed, informal setting. 



The return to school following winter break included the return of the Middle School Speakers Bureau.  

The Speakers Bureau is a partnership between the Career and Technical Education Department at UCPS and the Task Force.  CTE Director Brian Davis is a valued member of the Task Force.  His team chooses 2-3 middle schools and sets five dates during the school year at each school.  The Task Force recruits business and industry leaders to do classroom presentations. Students at Middle School Speakers BureauThe speakers commit to “take over” the classroom for the day, with an engaging presentation that includes information about their company, their industry, career progression and salary potential.  The task force conducts a training session for the speakers. The speakers are required to include a hands-on activity related to their business or industry. 

Members of the Middle School Speakers Bureau will present to students in May for the final session of the 2023-2024 school year.


It is YOUR partnership and YOUR investment that makes all of this work to champion business growth and business prosperity throughout Union County possible. 

Read the 2024 Q4 update here.

Read the 2023 Q3 update here.

Read the 2023 Q2 update here.

Read the 2023 Q1 update here.



We mean it when we call it YOUR Union County Chamber.

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