Local Leaders Celebrate Chattanooga’s Second Annual International Business Council Day on June 14
Chattanooga, Tenn. (June 5, 2012) – Leaders in the local business and international communities will gather with elected officials on June 14 to celebrate the second annual International Business Council Day at the one-year anniversary meeting of the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce’s International Business Council.
The event is open to the public and will take place from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Volkswagen Academy Conference Center, located at 7469 Volkswagen Drive. Advance registration is required by June 12 to attend this free gathering. Ethnic food will be provided, and guests will enjoy a traditional Mexican dance performance at the close of the event.
In celebration of the International Business Council’s one-year anniversary, the organization will debut its first annual Resource Guide with a special presentation to Chattanooga City Mayor Ron Littlefield and Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger.
Developed to support Hamilton County students and educators, the publication contains a summary of cross-cultural training strategies for each of the countries featured at International Business Council meetings over the last year.
“This guide will assist the Hamilton County Department of Education in advancing its goal to develop global mindsets among students while celebrating diversity and promoting cultural literacy,” said Gladys Pineda-Loher, who serves as business diversity coordinator for the Chattanooga Chamber.
Last year, the International Business Council earned a place in local history when Chattanooga City Mayor Ron Littlefield and Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger issued proclamations designating the second Thursday of each June “International Business Council Day.” In honor of the region’s growing international population, the designation celebrates Chattanooga’s distinctive tapestry of culture and recognizes the Chattanooga Chamber as the lead organization in welcoming international businesses to the community and providing business orientation to multi-national entrepreneurs.
During its first year of development, the International Business Council successfully advanced its mission to raise awareness about the region’s growing population of international businesspeople and the need to reach out to this emerging community. From June 2011 to June 2012, the council delivered cross-cultural business training through 10 events which included cultural performances in music and dance and explored proper business etiquette in the countries of Colombia, Germany, Mexico, South Korea, Spain, Venezuela, Brazil, Japan, India, Peru, Costa Rica, Philippines, Kenya, Honduras, Argentine, China, France and Switzerland.
These meetings served as a platform for local businesspeople of all backgrounds to connect, learn how to interact in multicultural business environments and build stronger ties between the international and greater Chattanooga business communities. Each gathering featured cross-cultural business training, networking opportunities and multicultural foods, music, dance and art.
Over the last year, the Council’s membership has grown to include multi-national business leaders, local educators, professionals of all backgrounds and supporters of the area’s international communities.
“With 40 countries, 25 languages and four generations of people currently represented within the International Business Council, our organization is well-prepared to continue its efforts to attract newcomers to our community as we leverage our collective diversity to promote regional economic growth,” said Pineda-Loher.
In addition to providing education and networking opportunities, the International Business Council also established Chattanooga’s first International Ambassadors program. With the goal of identifying key representatives from each of Chattanooga’s international communities, the initiative culminated with the assembly of dozens of local contacts who will lend translation and etiquette assistance to community leaders working to attract international investment to the area.
The second annual International Business Council Day celebration will open with remarks from Ryan Rose, general manager of employee services and organization for Volkswagen Chattanooga. Other speakers will include Charles Wood, vice president of economic development for the Chattanooga Chamber, and Sandra Brewer, vice president of member-investor services for the Chattanooga Chamber.
The meeting will close with a Mexican dance performance coordinated by a collection of Hispanic-owned businesses located in Dalton, Ga. As is customary at International Business Council meetings, performers will add a touch of authenticity to the experience by wearing traditional Mexican dance attire.
Event sponsors include the German-American Chamber of Commerce, Hoffman Services, Global LT, Coca Cola Bottling Company and Alliance Physical Therapy.
Reservations for the celebration are due by June 12. To register, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.