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Chamber volunteers raise record $3.65 million for annual Resource Campaign

Published: 6.20.14
(TULSA, Okla.) - Tulsa Regional Chamber volunteers raised more than $3.65 million for the organization during its 20th-annual Resource Campaign, edging last year's record of $3.6 million and easily surpassing a goal of $3.3 million, Chamber leaders announced at a victory celebration at Tulsa Country Club on Thursday night.

The volunteers worked in corporate teams over 10 weeks to sell sponsorships to the Chamber's programs, meetings, events and publications. Their total of $3,658,722 will support about 30 percent of the Chamber's annual budget.

"The funds raised in the Resource Campaign each year are poured back into our community and returned to Chamber members in the form of initiatives dedicated to advancing economic development and quality of life in northeastern Oklahoma," said Mike Neal, president and CEO of the Tulsa Regional Chamber. "This record-setting year is a testament both to the community spirit of our volunteers and the support and commitment of our region's generous business community."

The Tulsa Regional Chamber's Resource Campaign is considered a model program by chamber peers and is the second-largest campaign of its kind in the nation.

Revenue generated through the campaign underwrites the Chamber's program of work in the areas of small business and entrepreneurship, education, workforce attraction, advocacy, and member services such as referrals and networking events. It also helps fund the contributions the Chamber makes to its regional economic development program, Tulsa's Future, and to its regional tourism development program, VisitTulsa.

"What the Chamber does for business and quality of life in our area is not possible without the Resource Campaign, the volunteers who conduct it and the businesses that support it. The Tulsa region owes these supporters a debt of gratitude," said Wade Edmondson, 2014 chair of the Chamber and CEO of Commerce Bank.

The Chamber's fundraising goal of $3.3 million goal was surpassed under the leadership of campaign chair Jim Bender of WPX Energy; co-chair Phil Albert of Pelco Structural; and vice chairs John Anderson, with BancFirst; Kevan Buck, with the University of Tulsa; Sarah Hansel, with Hall Estill; and Steve Tiger, with Tulsa Tech.

"This campaign's success in not only surpassing its fundraising goal, but setting a record, is a testament to each and every one of our dedicated and extremely hardworking volunteers and the leadership of this campaign - all of whom have taken steps toward making the Tulsa region an even greater place," Bender said.

The chamber's 2,700 members include businesses and organizations from throughout the 10-county metropolitan area and the state of Oklahoma. Tulsa is the only five-star accredited chamber in Oklahoma and serves as a chamber industry-leader with a 90 percent member retention rate and three "nation's best chamber" titles.

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