Springfield Regional Chamber Merger Approved, New Logo Unveiled
SPRINGFIELD — The Massachusetts secretary of state has given final approval to the merger between the Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield (ACCGS) and the Springfield Chamber of Commerce to officially form the Springfield Regional Chamber.
At a meeting of both the ACCGS and the Springfield Chamber, the membership of the ACCGS and the Springfield Chamber voted in person and by proxy to unanimously approve the merger and create the new organization. The creation of one unified organization was the result of more than two years of discussions, comprehensive analyses, reviews of best practices, and benchmarking against chambers across the country.
Under the previous model, the ACCGS served as an umbrella organization providing services and benefits to a collective of affiliate chambers: the Springfield Chamber of Commerce, the Professional Women’s Chamber of Commerce (PWC), and the East of the River Five Town Chamber of Commerce (ERC5). The new organization reflects the merger of the ACCGS and Springfield into one organization.
“Our region is one economic marketplace,” said chamber President Jeffrey Ciuffreda. “This merger better reflects the regional thinking of our membership, and, as a result, we have a clearer and strengthened vision, stronger collaborations with existing regional partners, and greater opportunities for new ones. It enables the chamber to grow so that its members can grow, too.”
He added that the move “also allows us to have a stronger, more unified voice to better shape policy on Beacon Hill and in Washington,” and noted that the merger also allows the chamber to have an increased regional presence to help drive growth, a more cohesive structure, operational efficiencies, and more effective and impactful use of resources. “In the end, this merger should provide for an increased level of service to our members so that we can maximize their financial investment in us.”
While the ERC5 voted not to merge, the Springfield Regional Chamber will continue to provide services to these members through the remainder of their membership term. “We continue to work with the ERC5 and its leadership to identify mutually beneficial ways to work together to strengthen the region as a whole,” said Ciuffreda.
Meanwhile, the Springfield Regional Chamber has debuted its new logo. According to Nancy Creed, the chamber’s vice president of marketing and communications, the new logo has a more modern look. “We wanted the logo to better reflect what we do rather than who we are,” she said. “Many still don’t understand what a chamber does, but this logo, specifically the words ‘Connect to Commerce,’ clearly reflect our purpose.”
The logo, created by Creed with assistance from consultant Gary Czelusniak, centers around the number two because, as Creed noted, “partnerships take two for success — the chamber and a business, the chamber and the region, the chamber and its members, not to mention the businesses and consumers, businesses and employees, and the list goes on. Success is all about working together and building relationships.”
She said the choice of colors also are significant, noting that orange represents enthusiasm, creativity, success, strength, and endurance, and is a color highly accepted among the younger generations. “Believe it or not, seeing the color orange actually increases the oxygen supply to the brain and stimulates mental activity, and people associate orange with good value.”
She said grey, on the other hand, is associated with power, strength, authority, prestige without being overly formal, reliability, and stability. “Grey is also perceived as long-lasting and classic. That holds true for us since we have been connecting people to commerce for more than a century.”
Springfield Regional Chamber members in good standing can use the new logo on their websites as a means of communicating to consumers their commitment and investment in the chamber.
The chamber is also working on a new website, www.springfieldregionalchamber.com, and chamber staff have all transitioned to the new domain name for their e-mail addresses.