Tysons Chamber aims to focus on business growth

Members of the Tysons Regional Chamber of Commerce's 2019 board of directors pose for a group photo after being sworn in Jan. 9 at the Tower Club in Tysons. (Photo by Brian Trompeter)

The Tysons Regional Chamber of Commerce’s main mission is to create a platform of prosperity for its members, the group’s 2019 board chairman said.

“Whether you’re a non-profit, whether you’re a government agency, whether you’re a small business or a large business, our job is to help every one of you grow,” said Tucker Gladhill at the chamber’s Jan. 9 board-installation breakfast at the Tower Club in Tysons,

He quoted the old proverb of teaching a man to fish so he will eat for a lifetime.

“When I look around Tysons, I can’t help but notice that we have one of the biggest darned fishing poles in the state of Virginia,” he said. “There’s a lot of opportunity out there. All you have to do is look out these windows and see the construction, traffic and development.”

Gladhill said the flurry of activity makes him want to help the chamber’s members and supporters grow their businesses.

“We’re not going to bait your hook for you, we’re not going to cast your rod or reel . . . but what we will do is we’ll lead you to where the fish bite and we’ll help guide you in the pursuit,” he said.

Gladhill urged those present to begin thinking about how Amazon’s plans to relocate part of its second headquarters in Arlington and Alexandria will affect other area businesses, commuting, housing prices, profit margins and demands for higher employee compensation.

“The reality, folks, if you want to be in business surviving in the next three to five years, you should be asking yourself these questions,” he said, adding that those queries were just the tip of the iceberg.

Outgoing chairman Virginia Case said 2018 had been a year of unprecedented change for the chamber. The organization grew its membership, created new events  and started a legislative-affairs committee, she said.

“We worked to champion initiatives on behalf of our member businesses and we learned more about the opportunities and challenges that face us all doing business in Virginia,” Case said. “This year flew by in many ways, and though from time to time I questioned my sanity for taking this role while running my own business, I’m happy that I did.”

People join chambers of commerce in search of networking, eduction, representation and community, she added.

“The chamber is where you can learn, grow and lead,” Case said.

Alex Robbins, a staff member for U.S. Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-11th), administered the chamber board’s oath of office.

The chamber had not yet selected its 2019 officers (except Gladhill as chairman), but board members and the companies for which they work are: Anthony Anikeeff (Williams Mullen PC), Samim Ardeishar (Grossberg Co. LLP), Virginia Case (StraTac Marketing), Maureen Caufield (FiberLight), Uppasna Chand (McLean Family Dentistry), Andrew Clark (Cause Network), Kevin Corey (MVB Financial Services), Gina Gagliardi (WeWork), Tucker Gladhill (Victory Van Corp.), Kathleen Kelley (Bean, Kinney & Korman PC), Frederick Keown (Convene), Walter Kim (GRAPHEK), Timothy Klinkner (First Citizens Bank), Jeff Krashin (Merrill Lynch) and Jonathan LaCroix (Cox Communications).

Other board members include James Lawson (Impact Business Solutions LLC), Alex Levy (1st Stage), Maureen Loftus (LearningRx), Rod Loges (One Degree Capital), Rodney Lusk (Fairfax County Economic Development Authority), Audrey Lustre (Silver Spoon Caterers), David MacGillivray (Human Capital Advisors), Kara Carmichael Mayle (Tower Club Tysons), Kathy McNeill (Digital Solutions Co.), Kara Shelton (CST Group CPAs PC), Mariam Tadross (Rees Broome PC), Chris Tomseth (Money Mailer of Tysons), Diana Villarreal (Capitol Financial Planners), Michelle Walker (Trebla Consulting LLC), Sanjay Srikantiah (Morgan Stanley) and Suzan Zimmerman (Strategic Capture Group).

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