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The Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce: Ovation
Honors bestowed, selfies shot, business and social might celebrated
DAILY News  June 1, 2015, by Wayne Alan Brenner
"...Which is why it made perfect sense for the Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce to hold their annual awards banquet last Friday, filling the Zilker Ballroom at the riverside Hyatt with all manner of business types and community boosters and various movers-and-shakers of Asian/Pacific heritage. Not to mention a posh phalanx of other-heritaged associates and political allies – and a few grizzled journos in the thick of it all, taking notes and knocking back the Chardonnay...."

Point Austin: Conflict of Interest
Facing corporate tyranny, we're all "interested parties"
News Column  December 15, 2006, by Michael King
"...And it also firmly contradicts city official and chamber of commerce presumptions that any kind of economic development is by definition good – if we lose jobs, money, and neighborhoods by the transaction, Austinites will effectively be subsidizing Lincoln Property Co. and Wal-Mart for the benefit of the corporations and their stockholders..."

Austin @ Large: Austin at Large
The boys from the chamber look for an opportunity to muddy the waters once again.
News Column  September 26, 2003, by Mike Clark-Madison
"...Twice in the past week I've heard hotshot economists tell business leaders (well, a lot of them were business followers, but we can pretend) that ACL Fest is a harbinger of Austin's future. Both in the Opportunity Austin deal thrown by the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce and at the East Austin Economic Summit sponsored by the Austin Community Development Corp., tourism and hospitality were pegged as essential growth industries that will lead the recovery that's still just around the corner...."

Tug of War
Changing Chamber Funds
News Column  August 5, 1999, by Jenny Staff Johnson
"...Marketing efforts to entice minority conventioneers to Austin will now be coordinated by the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau, rather than by the city's several minority chambers of commerce. In the past, the city has paid a couple of hundred thousand a year each to the Hispanic, African American (Capital City), and Asian chambers of commerce to support marketing programs aimed at minority business travelers..."

One Small Step Towards Equality, One Large Step for Austin
Austin + Domestic Partner Benefits = Reality
DAILY The Gay Place  October 31, 2013, by Sarah Marloff
"...In combing over the fine print, however, a loophole still exists. During the three-hour debate, opponents, including spokespeople for contractors' associations and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, fretted that the new requirements might inhibit some companies looking for incentives..."

A Fistful of Pennies
Campaign Finance Law Hog-Ties Chamber
News Story  May 8, 1998, by Amy Smith
"..."Business people aren't accustomed to reaching into their pockets to contribute $100 to a campaign," said Glenn West, president and CEO of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, Saturday night at Palmer Auditorium. "They're accustomed to contributing through their company."..."

Austin And the Wider World
State department visit puts global spotlight on tech center
DAILY News  May 19, 2013, by Richard Whittaker
"...This time, the assemblage of 26 ambassadors visiting Texas came from established powers like Germany and Ireland, rising nations like the Philippines and Ukraine, and smaller, often more troubled countries like Kazakhstan and the Kingdom of Lesotho. Theirs was a two-day whirlwind tour of the Hill Country on May 13-14, taking in the LBJ Presidential Library with Luci Baines Johnson, a trip to the Chestnut Community Redevelopment Project and the Texas Advanced Computing Center, and finally a lunch, hosted by the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce at the Driskill Hotel...."

Point Austin: Welcome to Hard Times
Ausitn Interfaith's summit addresses economic plans, current crisis
News Column  February 13, 2009, by Michael King
"...A panel of designated local experts briefly addressed the state of the regional economy and their projects to improve it. Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce President Mike Rollins spoke primarily about Opportunity Austin, the chamber's ongoing effort at job creation, emphasizing that the program is aimed at creating employment opportunities "all along the ladder," from high school on up..."

Austin Says Yes to Teacher Pay Raise
AISD Prop. 1 passes, even though state makes it as tough as possible
DAILY News  November 5, 2008, by Richard Whittaker
"...The big problem for the district is that while the state makes them go to the ballot every time they want to increase taxes to cover costs, it also prevents them from explaining why they need the cash in the ballot language. That's why Forgione thanked three seemingly unlikely allies – Austin ISD Board of Trustees, Education Austin, and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce – for getting the message about what the extra cash buys: an extra $1,300 per teacher in their wages (3% of the median teacher's wage), retro-active and to be paid in the December 18 paycheck, then the actual 3% pay raise in January...."

Austin @ Large: Austin at Large
The charter vs. the election code in court
News Column  February 8, 2002, by Mike Clark-Madison
"...The current campaign-finance ordinance, sponsored by Austinites for a Little Less Corruption and passed in 1997, originally imposed its $100 contribution limits not only on candidates but also on issue-oriented political action committees. When the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce challenged this in court, the city's lawyers told the judge, basically, that they agreed with the plaintiffs, and out the law went..."

Austin Kids First Throws Money into AISD Races
New pro-reform PAC drops $30,000 behind candidates
DAILY News  October 31, 2012, by Richard Whittaker
"...One education regular has thrown some cash their way: Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce education guru Drew Scheberle gave the PAC $500...."

ACC Propositions and Board of Trustees
Austin Community College bonds, tax rate increase, and board of trustees
News Story  October 16, 2014, by The Chronicle Editorial Board
"...Even Mahoney’s allies say he’s hard to work with – so that even when he’s right, he’s often ineffective. Williams, on the other hand, was rightly criticized for giving the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce too much say over AISD matters, and letting former Superintendent Meria Carstarphen run roughshod over public engagement..."

AISD Board Races Show Signs of Life
A sudden influx of candidates
News Story  August 14, 2014, by Richard Whittaker
"...The first name came from Barksdale herself, when she said she'll endorse Kazique Jelani Prince, CEO of Jelani Con­sult­ing, to replace her. However, he already faces a competitive race: Kendall Pace, a management consultant with Smart Flour Foods, currently serves as a member of the District Advisory Council, and will probably have the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce in her corner, since she serves on its Education and Talent Development Council...."

The History of an IDEA
Factchecking the AISD trustees' op-ed claims
DAILY News  December 28, 2011, by Richard Whittaker
"...Of course, this is probably all sitting very nicely with the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, whose representatives have been visibly irritated by what little oversight the board has mustered on this deal. Their ideal situation would be that Carstarphen would have been able to handle the IDEA contract all by herself..."

We're 49th! ... Or Just Seventh of 10
Union and Austin ISD argue over teacher pay – and what to do about it
News Story  April 9, 2010, by Richard Whittaker
"...The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce has remained neutral on the proposed salary increase. Vice President of Education and Workforce Development Drew Scheberle said, "I've told [Malfaro] we're not opposed to a pay raise, but it needs to be within the long-term goals that the district is trying to accomplish." So far he has yet to see any "holistic place" where a pay raise would fit into the strategic plan while helping reach the core goal of improving graduation rates..."

Shade Rolls Out of Council Race?
This April 1 release from the Shade campaign
DAILY News  April 1, 2008, by Wells Dunbar
"... Randi later earned an MBA from Harvard Business School. Randi has always been an active community volunteer and has served on the boards of the Association of Women in Technology – Austin, Austin Clean Energy Initiative, Austin Entrepreneurs Foundation, Central Texas Better Business Bureau, Foundation for Women’s Resources Committee of the Board, Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Austin, OneStar Foundation, PeopleFund, Sigma Delta Tau Sorority’s Texas Education Foundation, TexChange, Texas Hillel Foundation, UT Commission on 125, and the Volunteer Center (now Hands on Central Texas)..."

Chamber Recommends CAMPO Reorganization
Fewer and better-educated members could improve efficiency of transportation planning group, report says
News Story  January 5, 2007, by Kimberly Reeves
"...Much could be gleaned from a Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce task force report released last week on the governance of the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization Transportation Policy Board, not the least of which was what went wrong when it came time to debate the region's toll-road plan...."

Will Austin Applicants Get a "Fair Chance"?
Proposed ordinance would require businesses consider job applicants with criminal histories
News Story  March 24, 2016, by Amy Kamp
"...While Casar had a full house, Zimmerman's event was a decidedly forlorn affair with only the four speakers and the press in attendance. In addition to Zim­mer­man, Pamela Bratton from Meador Staffing Services, and Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce President Mark Rollins spoke..."

A Great Big Bundle of Rail and Roads
Council moves transportation bonds toward a November vote
News Story  August 7, 2014, by Mac McCann
"...There have been early complaints – from road supporters and rail supporters – that this "bundling" is inherently unfair, although virtually every bond package on the ballot exhibits some version of bundling, to broaden the potential appeal. And as we reported last week, bundling road improvements into the rail proposal appears to have earned the support of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce's board of directors..."

The Changing of the Board
News Column  October 24, 1997
"...Hispanic Chamber of Commerce..."

The Making of an Endorsement
News Story  October 24, 2008
"...* Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce..."

Chamber Takes a Swing Against Proposition 2
Opposition starts to mobilize against Stop Domain Subsidies' charter amendment
News Story  September 12, 2008, by Richard Whittaker
"...The original deal obligated future councils to make the payments, which a court found unconstitutional. The rewritten deal reinstated a get-out clause for the city, though the Austin Chamber of Commerce argues against using it..."

Chamber Balks on Bonds
News Column  August 7, 1998
"...A lot of factors played a role in the Daryl Slusher, Kirk Watson, Bill Spelman push to shift more of the bond package funding into public works and transportation. But the major outside factor was an attempt by the Slusher/Spelman/Watson trio to lobby for the endorsement of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce..."

Out of Reach
Living Wage Eludes the Average Austinite
News Story  March 20, 1998, by Nate Blakeslee
"...illustration by Doug Potter Does anyone remember the last time they heard any bad news about Austin's economy? The Texas Workforce Commission recently announced that regional job growth turned out to be higher than expected for 1997 - about 4.5% - for the Austin-San Marcos metro area. The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce is predicting continued robust growth for 1998, and everyone agrees that the area unemployment rate is around 3.1%, roughly 40% below the national average..."

AISD and ACC Board of Trustees
Trustee elections can mean uncontested drifts or bare-knuckle throwdowns
News Story  August 25, 2016, by Richard Whittaker
"...Place 5: When it comes to establishment credentials, Thomas Miranda is arguably the lead candidate in this three-way race. Former chair of the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and therefore honorary ex officio member of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, the president and CEO of tech consulting firm Sparkovation Advisors approaches from the employer-need side of the training equation – a large part of ACC's remit..."

Louis Malfaro and 18 Years of AISD Politics
The teachers' union veteran looks back as he moves forward
News Story  September 3, 2010, by Richard Whittaker
"...23, Louis Malfaro addressed the Austin Independent School District board of trustees for the last time as president of teachers' union Education Austin. Four days earlier Drew Scheberle, senior vice president of education and work force development for the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, joked to the same board that he'd grown a goatee as a farewell tribute to Malfaro's distinctive facial hair...."

Council Proposes “Austin Affordability Action Plan”
Looking for ways to balance the budget
News Story  March 2, 2017, by Michael King
"...One issue was the genesis of the proposal – transparently a simplified version of the "Affordability Agenda" currently being promoted by the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce. Troxclair's Council message-board postings cited the support of the GACC and other groups (RECA, Downtown Austin Alliance, contractors and builders associations) that also includes surprising bedfellows the NAACP, Goodwill, and One Voice Central Texas (the broad coalition of social service organizations)..."

Austin Leads Pack on Early Student Aid Submissions
Local students and their families get much-needed FAFSA help
News Story  April 21, 2016, by Richard Whittaker
"...In public education, doubly so. Not the case here: An alliance between multiple Austin-area school districts and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce means almost half of local students got their federal financial aid applications in early this year...."

Point Austin: All Aboard for November
The players have arrived, now for the programs
News Column  August 21, 2014, by Michael King
"...At the city level, candidate forums are beginning to kick off, and the first big mayoral forum occurred Monday at the Four Seasons, sponsored by the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce* and the Real Estate Coun­cil of Austin. Five candidates took part – Steve Adler, Cole, Council Member Mike Martinez, Todd Phelps, and Randall Stephens – and though it was mostly a congenial affair, there were a few sharp exchanges..."

Austin Tomorrow
Building on the Past
News Story  October 23, 1998, by Mike Clark-Madison
"...All of which is good reason for the combined pro-bond campaign to get busy, which they are now starting to do. As with the May bonds, the November package has support from both business and progressive interest groups: The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce and the S.O.S..."

Austin's Growing Pains
We’ve got “an affordability problem”
News Story  March 2, 2017, by Michael King
"...If it's spring – a bit early even for Austin, but the redbuds say yes – it's survey time, and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce has followed the City of Austin's "Community Survey" with its own production, an annual "Voter Survey" performed Dec. 12-14..."

Imagining Austin
Austinites begin a new comprehensive plan for the city's future
News Story  January 29, 2010, by Katherine Gregor
"...That means the comp plan will drive spending decisions for hundreds of millions in city projects over the next five years – a "follow the money" impact that ought to wake up the whole town. Yet to date, major employers and business groups, like the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce and the Real Estate Council of Austin, haven't shown much interest in the comprehensive plan..."

Bills of the Week: House Bill 1 and Senate Bill 1
Texas Lege looks to finalize budget deal
News Column  May 28, 2015, by Richard Whittaker
"...With no reforms to the state's recapture system – known as Robin Hood – many districts will still be sending more out than the state will be adding in. In a May 26 letter to the Travis County delegation, Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce Vice President for Education Development Drew Scheberle spelled out what that means for the Austin Independent School District: In the 2016 financial year, the district will send $264 million to state coffers, breaking over $500 million in the 2017-18 biennium..."

Solar Celebrity HelioVolt Lands in Austin
Darling of international renewable energy circles to build its first solar-manufacturing plant here
News Story  February 8, 2008, by Daniel Mottola
"...Local business boosters hail the company's commitment to Austin. "HelioVolt puts Austin on the solar map," said Jose Beceiro, clean energy director for the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce..."

Austin Energy: Rate Cuts Solve Everybody's Problems
Council votes to approve utility rate reduction
News Story  September 1, 2016, by Michael King
"...These strange bedfellows – joined by the Austin Regional Manufacturers Association, Austin Energy Low Income Customers, Building Owners and Managers Association, Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, NXP Semiconductors, etc., etc. – are among the 22 signatories to an agreement with Austin Energy that will reduce utility rates for all AE's customers for the next five years..."

The Next Round of School Reform
AISD focuses again on Eastside schools
News Story  February 7, 2014, by Richard Whittaker
"...For Drew Scheberle, Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce's Senior Vice President of Education and Talent Development, there's a simple truth: Struggling schools in East Austin can make the grade. Take Reagan High..."

Point Austin: Getting Mobilized
Arguments (and opponents) against the mobility bond run a little thin
News Column  October 8, 2010, by Michael King
"...It's frankly a stretch to call Prop. 1 controversial – more than 30 local organizations of varying size and perspectives (from ADAPT to the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce) have already endorsed it..."

From Austin to Travis County -- With $$$$$$
Travis County's upcoming bond election asks mostly urban voters to fund suburban sprawl.
News Story  October 19, 2001, by Amy Smith
"...Those who favor the package include a coalition of civic and business groups called Yes! Travis County Bonds Committee (i.e., Austin Area Research Organization, the Real Estate Council of Austin, Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, Capital Area Transportation Coalition, Austin 2010). They say the bonds will improve safety, increase mobility, and help maintain our quality of life..."

At Your Service? Austin's Private Landfills
News Story  July 5, 1996
"...Texas Disposal's Bob Gregory has gotten a lot of mileage out of attorney-lobbyist David Armbrust, who's no friend of Todd's but can count Councilmember Ronney Reynolds as an ally. BFI has signed on with public relations czarina Kerry Tate who, as chair of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, likes to think everyone is her friend..."

A Declaration of Independence
Zavala Elementary and Principal Sean Fox are succeeding at going their own way
News Story  May 8, 2014, by Richard Whittaker
"...As the number and importance of the tests increases, the amount of time on test-prep increases; the depth of children's knowledge and learning skills suffers. Yet on the end-of-year reports churned out by the Texas Education Agency and the fed­eral Department of Education, everything looks great, and pro-testing groups like the Texas Small Busi­ness Association and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce applaud the results..."

Revival of Spirit
University Baptist Grows Despite Controversy
News Story  May 29, 1998, by Kayte VanScoy
"...Many people in Austin seem to agree with Bethune. The Sunday morning following the February 24 expulsion saw the church packed like an Easter morning service, with luminaries such as Mayor Kirk Watson and Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce President Gary Valdez turning out to show their support..."

Chamber Raises a Glass to WTP4
WTP4 supporters are a who's who collection of business interests
News Story  September 25, 2009, by Wells Dunbar
"...And apart from the speakers on the dais, yet another front in the PR ground war over the plant opened: the emergence of We Want Water, a pro-WTP4 campaign headed by the Austin Chamber of Commerce...."

GABC Pictures Black Austin
#iamblackaustin showcases a diversity of black Austinites
News Story  February 5, 2015, by Nora Ankrum
"...When first asked to consider the top job at the Capital City African-American Chamber of Commerce, Natalie Cofield wasn't interested. "I didn't want to move to Texas," recalls Cofield, who has now been president of the chamber – today called the Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce – for three and a half years..."

The Slow Dying of Johnston High
State accountability standards may close a school on the edge of survival
News Story  November 30, 2007, by Kimberly Reeves
"...3, just a month into the school year. The overheated Johnston cafeteria was crowded with people focused on the success of the school – from members of the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to key officials in the Austin Independent School Dis­trict to a table full of Texas Education Agency staffers who would deal directly with the Johnston "intervention." Student leaders were also on hand, among them senior class Presid­ent Gabby Camarillo, ready to take the microphone to urge classmates not to give up..."

“Taste of Black Austin” Explores Cultural Foodways
New photography exhibit showcases Austin’s African-American chefs
Food Story  January 26, 2017, by Jessi Cape
"...A new photography exhibit, "Taste of Black Austin," aims to showcase the past, present, and future stories of Austin's black chefs by exploring cultural foodways. "Food has always been a vehicle for bringing people together and building community, and that's one thing we're really trying to push in 2017," says event organizer Hakeem Adewumi, communications manager of nonprofit organization Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce..."

Point Austin: Bernanke Speaks
The Fed chairman visits, and the news is very mixed
News Column  December 5, 2008, by Michael King
"...The address was apparently well-received by the assembled members and friends of the Austin Chamber of Commerce – which we should not forget is a historical euphemism for the Club of Bosses and Major Property Owners and whose direct personal interest in the soundness of investment banking is rather greater than that of the rest of us. Although the formal occasion was the annual Austin Economic Forecast, Bernanke only passingly acknowledged the "strong and diversified" Texas economy before plunging into the "economic and financial challenges" facing the entire nation...."

Austin At Risk
Tech leaders look for solution to Austin's growth problems
News Story  May 12, 2000, by Mike Clark-Madison
"...But how bad is the boom? How bad can success, wealth, and abundance be? "My sense is that the majority of our local businesses are a band of happy campers. The services sector is especially showing strong gains," says Kerry Tate, president of the TateAustin PR firm and former chair of the Chamber of Commerce..."

Point Austin: Back to the Future
GOP officials take opportunity to demagogue on heels of Obama clean air plan announcement
News Column  August 6, 2015, by Michael King
"...Patrick (along with the rest of the GOP) has a deep political stake in fear-mongering and immigrant-bashing, but crying, "The terrorists are at the door!" on environmental issues is transparent demagoguery. Much more common was the chamber-of-commerce-style response that trying to clear the air of excess carbon dioxide will "cost too much" and "do too little." Patrick also pounded that drum, and that was the gist of Attorney General Ken Paxton's similar press release, accompanied by his inevitable declaration that "Texas will fight ....."

Cool Austin, Cool Planet
This Earth Day, the ambitious Austin Climate Protection Plan celebrates a first year of slow, quiet, but impressive progress
News Story  April 18, 2008, by Katherine Gregor
"..."Even though this is a global problem, each of us has an individual responsibility to help address the problem," stressed Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels, in Austin recently for a Seattle Chamber of Commerce group visit. He noted that the U.S..."

Austin's Chambermaid
News Column  June 16, 1995, by Alex de Marban
"...The mayor is victorious. A week after a presentation by Mayor Bruce Todd before the Chamber of Commerce members urging them to support a governor's veto of House Bill 3193, which would excise Chamber member Gary Bradley's Circle C subdivision from Austin's extra-territorial jurisdiction, the Chamber of Commerce Executive Board voted Tuesday, June 13, to do just that..."

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