On Feb. 9, The Chamber officially turned 160 so we held a party and opened the doors for more than 300 friends. The evening event was appropriately held at the Royal BC Museum and featured exhibits highlighting the Chambers' past, present and future.
The Chamber was formed in the age of steamships and gold rushes when waves of new arrivals settled in the region seeking better lives for themselves and their families.
“It’s a bit awe inspiring to know we’re carrying on a tradition of effective advocacy that dates back to 1863,” Chamber chair Kris Wirk said.
The Chamber’s earliest efforts were to promote the region as a hub for culture, finance and shipping. It was a time for adventure as well as profound disruption. Many of those stories are included in The Chamber 1863 web project, a special endeavour that highlights the history of commerce and the many communities that contributed to the growth of commerce in our region.
“It’s important to understand where you’ve been before you plan where you’re going. Looking back helps us move forward as we strive to be the region’s most diverse and influential business association,” Chamber CEO Bruce Williams said.
As part of our forward planning, the Greater Victoria Chamber 1863 Impact Award was announced in November and will provide local post-secondary students a total of $160,000 to help build the next generation of skilled workers. Find out more at Victoriachamber.ca/impact-award.