Chairman’s Message

A Message from Joseph Raichel,
2017 Chairman of the Chamber Board of Directors
Senior Vice President, Western Virginia Business Banking Manager, Wells Fargo

I am energized and excited to serve you as the 2017 Chairman of the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. It is a privilege.  I appreciate the trust and confidence placed in me to perform this role.

The Chamber Chair has three key duties.

  • First, lead the 26-member Chamber Board in engagement in our Chamber mission and governance.
  • Second, provide guidance, support and encouragement to our staff to better serve our members.
  • Third, communicate effectively by actively seeking a dialogue with you on the ideals, accomplishments and strategic direction of our Chamber.

It is critically important to me that the Charlottesville business community recognizes the value our Chamber brings.  The Chamber value proposition is this: To help build your business. To help build your community.

How does being our Chamber member help you build your business?

  • Access to a 1,200+ network of enterprises. Over 3,000 members attend Chamber events annually.
  • Chamber business referrals. Our Chamber fields and make business referrals daily – to Chamber members.
  • Chamber website. 160,000 visitors, 80,000 views with 4,000 visitors clicking to Chamber member hot-links.
  • In 2016, over 350 individuals gained specific business and workforce skills through Chamber business workshops and forums. Leadership Charlottesville, our signature educational and networking program, is the premier local professional business development program.

How does your Chamber help build your community?

  • Through our mission: “dedicated to representing private enterprise, promoting business and enhancing the quality of life in our Greater Charlottesville communities;”
  • We advocate for economic vitality & growth and job creation. The best economic development & social program is a job with career opportunities.  Our Charlottesville Works Initiative, in partnership with Piedmont Virginia Community College, is working to take citizens from dependency to self-sufficiency;
  • By collaborating with our vibrant nonprofit organizations to achieve common community objectives; and,
  • By advocating for community initiatives that enhance quality of life for all.

There is much to be proud, but more to do to build a prosperous economy for us today and for future generations.

As 2017 opens, the forces of accelerating change and globalization will continue to impact us in Charlottesville, around our nation and the world.  Accelerating change brings challenge and opportunity.  Now more than ever, we need to strengthen our foundations, such as our Chamber, to help create a more positive business environment for us.  Together, we can achieve transformative goals.  I ask your renewed commitment to your Chamber.  Please take advantage of all our services, opportunities and give us your good advice.  Your voice matters.  We are listening.

Together — let’s be bold in 2017.  Thank you.

Joseph Raichel, 2017 Chairman of the Chamber Board of Directors
Senior Vice President, Western Virginia Business Banking Manager, Wells Fargo

Our Mission

The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to representing private enterprise, promoting business, and enhancing the quality of life in our Greater Charlottesville communities.