|The Ottumwa Area Chamber of Commerce is a non-profit business and professional association whose mission is "to promote the greater Ottumwa area as a vigorous hub of commerce and quality community life" The Chamber is first and foremost a membership-based organization whose resources are the time, skills and financial support of its members.
Both large and small area businesses and organizations as well as individuals from virtually all professions are represented in our membership, and they have the opportunity to influence the direction of the Chamber's programs. The more members the Chamber has, the better it can represent the community. The members are the Chamber and are our future as a community.
Several Chamber committees work to provide services and programs designed to enhance our mission, organization and community:
- The Chamber Ambassadors celebrate the successes and transitions of businesses in the community and welcome new faces to the area.
- The Business/Education Partnership has sponsored the Teen Leaders in Action program to develop leadership skills and of high school students in Wapello County.
- The Home Expo Committee works hard each year to put on the biggest home improvement expo in SE Iowa each year with an average crowd of over 7000 visitors.
- The Public Affairs Committee works to ensure legislation and ordinances provide a favorable business climate in the greater Ottumwa area.
- The Chamber Golf Classic committee plans and hosts what is considered one of the best chamber Golf outings & mixers in Iowa each year!
- The Retail /Shop Ottumwa Committee brings together area merchants to promote Ottumwa as a regional retail hub through retail events and cooperative advertising.
- The Chamber's Holiday Nights 'N Lights committee plans, builds and operates a spectacular one mile tour of over 600 lighted displays for the community each year.
- The Image and Beautification Committee works to promote community pride, image and beautification through banner programs, positive media messages, Mayor beautification programs and signage.
- The Gene Schultz Award Committee oversees the nominations and selection process to select a recipient for the prestigious Gene Schultz Community Service Award. This award, presented annually by the Ottumwa Chamber recognizes individuals for outstanding contributions as volunteers in the community as characterized by Mr. Schultz.
Other committees assist the Chamber of Commerce staff and board of directors to plan events and direct the programs of the organization.
The Ottumwa Area Chamber of Commerce is part of a consortium of community and economic development organizations administered through Partner in Progress, Inc. This consortium unites the Ottumwa Chamber, Economic Development Corporation, Ottumwa Progress Inc., Main Street, Bridge View Center, Inc. with the City of Ottumwa and Wapello County. The partnership delivers community and economic development services more strategically and more efficiently.
For more than a century, the Ottumwa Area Chamber of Commerce has been an influence in the development of the community, and now looks forward to being a part of paving the way to the bright future of Ottumwa.