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Local chamber collaborates to boost local business success

Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce amplifies the voice of the local business community
The Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce represents solo entrepreneurs, small and medium-sized businesses as well as large corporations.

“Strong business, strong communities” – the motto of the Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce – has inspired the area’s largest and most influential business association to step up efforts to support local businesses through the turbulent times of the coronavirus pandemic – and towards economic recovery.

“The past two years have been challenging for many Tri-Cities’ businesses,” says Leslie Courchesne, CEO of the Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce. “It’s never been more important to come together to help amplify the voice of the business community to all levels of government on what businesses need in order to recover and be resilient in these challenging times.” 

The chamber, which has worked to strengthen business in Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Anmore and Belcarra for five decades, embraces the role of providing an essential resource for its diverse member base. “We represent solo entrepreneurs, small and medium-sized businesses as well as large corporations that have multiple branches throughout the Tri-Cities and beyond,” she explains. “We cover all sectors, whether it’s trucking and transportation, real estate developers, hospitality, financial services, manufacturing, non-profits and more.”

Through extensive connections spanning the business community, “members can meet each other, explore areas for collaboration and mentorship, and give referrals,” she says. “We also organize events with experts and thought-leaders to learn about the latest economic outlook.”

Members can also benefit from the chamber’s open channel to government agencies and representatives. During the pandemic, for example, the organization provided up-to-date information about regulations, funding and relief programs, and any relevant announcements from various levels of governments, notes Courchesne. “We worked to get this information out as fast as possible to help businesses access support that could help their bottom line.” 

While some enterprises continued to thrive through the pandemic, she says that many sectors faced restrictions that impacted their ability to operate. “The events industry, for example, was the first sector hit with restrictions – and one of the last to see them lifted. Together with members and partners from the events industry, we helped to rally government support to create favourable conditions for the industry’s recovery.

“We advocate on behalf of all our members to improve their chances to succeed – and get the economy moving in the right direction,” says Courchesne. 

In addition to government-facing advocacy, the chamber also aims to reach another audience that is key for supporting businesses: consumers. 

“We promote shopping local in collaboration with the Tri-City News, local business improvement associations and municipalities,” she says. “We can’t stress enough how important it is to support local businesses – since this means keeping much of your well-earned dollars right here in your own backyard.”

Thriving local businesses help create strong communities, and the positive response to past campaigns shows that more and more consumers understand this correlation, says Courchesne. “Last year, for example, our Taste of the Tri-Cities campaign for the foodservice industry was very well received and generated a high volume of customers.”

A newly launched online business profile for Tri-City Chamber of Commerce, available on GuidedBy, gives consumers an at-a-glance overview of tri-city businesses, including a short description of their services, along with location and contact information. Business Matters, a Tri-Local campaign that was launched in March, also helped members get added exposure via a business directory.

“You can peruse the listings of our 800+ member businesses and organizations as well as the benefits and resources offered by the chamber,” she says. “We have a great group of members who actively provide leadership on the board, on committees and volunteer as our ambassadors. There are so many fantastic opportunities to get involved and help the chamber become even stronger.”

Other perks for members include access to the Chambers Group Insurance Plan, benefits and savings, plus meetings and events, says Courchesne. “Join us if you want to connect, network, access unique benefits and services, and be heard by decision-makers. We help you grow your business, learn new skills, access exclusive savings and discounts, and advocate to all levels of government on your behalf.”

To learn more about the Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce, visit To browse the businesses in the tri-city region, visit