As an entrepreneur and business owner for more than 30 years, I know the many contributions that small businesses make to communities of every size across our province. I also understand the many challenges they face. As a long-time member of the BC Chamber of Commerce network, I appreciate the work that Chambers of Commerce and Boards of Trade put in every single day and the benefits you deliver to your members and the value we collectively provide as a network.
This is a critical time for British Columbia’s small businesses. The cost of doing business, that includes increasing insurance costs, taxation and fees, regulatory issues, supply chain challenges, labour mobility and shortages, affordable housing and transportation, mental health, and diversity and inclusion are just some of the many issues that need to be addressed. The theme of our 2022 AGM and Conference was “Focusing Forward,” recognizing that as British Columbia emerges from the pandemic, we have reasons for optimism despite the challenges ahead.
As Chair, acting on behalf of our Board of Directors, my goal is to reaffirm the BC Chamber of Commerce as the bold, inclusive, and definitive voice for BC’s business community. To achieve that, much of my focus will be on listening to you and ensuring that we are responsive to your needs and delivering timely, effective value. I am committed to guiding the BC Chamber of Commerce forward in a way that ensures we are doing everything we can to help you and businesses in your communities prosper and grow.
Delivering member value will require us to find better ways to serve you. Having a bold voice moving forward means speaking up and speaking out on issues of importance to business and advocating effectively. Importantly, it also means recognizing that our members of all sizes and from all regions have issues of importance to them. By working together, challenging the status quo, being innovative and being open to new ideas and perspectives, we can achieve a great deal and make our organizations and this beautiful province even better.
I am excited about the year ahead. I know all of us at the BC Chamber of Commerce, and within our network, are up to the job.
Dr. Greg Thomas
2022-23 Chair, Board of Directors