By Lori Lee
NDG Contributing Writer
‘Aspire To Greatness!’ will be the theme for this 16th annual Year End Celebration of the Collin County Black Chamber of Commerce (CCBCC). Traditionally held during the holiday season, the red-carpet affair will celebrate the year’s achievements and Collin County business leaders. “This year’s Gala will be a great recognition of the milestones that we’ve achieved,” states Dewayne Gibson, the Chamber’s President- Elect for 2023.
“We are celebrating the relationships that we’ve developed with our members, partners, and sponsors. This Year End Celebration symbolizes 16 years of growth for our chamber,” notes Gibson.
The chamber will be celebrating a new grounding in the community with the opening of its new home office space, explains Gibson. The organization will also celebrate its recently launched Business Accelerator and Business Incubator programs, and its successful Business EXPO. These events have successfully supported the growth of Black businesses in Collin County over the past year, while bringing speakers to the community to support funding and procurement opportunities.
The speakers do a good job spelling out how to launch a new business, explains current CCBCC President, Debra Austin. Chamber events offer new business leaders a chance to learn, network and grow.
The majority of those who join the chamber just started their businesses, and they don’t know what to do, explains Austin. They may not have the skills or the connections they need, and the Black Chamber is there to help. The Chamber tries to give them some basic skills and help them build business relationships, learn what resources may be available and help them develop business skills. It’s a great learning ground to interact with other businesses and potential clients, explains Austin.
Many African Americans may not know where there are resources, explains Dewayne Gibson. The Chamber connects them with African American business owners and larger entities, such as DART, which they may not know present opportunities to the Black business community.
Board Chair Valerie Warrior adds that “CCBCC is a great opportunity for any business owner in Collin County to connect with likeminded entrepreneurs.” As a member since 2008, Valerie explains that collaborations and connections are keys to longevity and success. “You get out of CCBCC what you put into it, and networking is the key,” explains Warrior. The CCBCC presents repeat opportunities for owners to promote their brands, products or services to reach a much larger audience than they could on their own. Events like the Chamber’s annual Small Business Expo, and the Year End Celebration, put brands in front of hundreds of people, she explains.
“The event is always a lavish occasion for members and guests alike to see the fruits of our year-long activities,” notes Valerie. “It’s a festive time of the year to all come together for great food, entertainment, vendor showcases, and an amazing keynote speaker.”
Charles O’Neal, Board Chairman for the US Black Chamber and President of the Texas African American Association of Chambers of Commerce (TAAACC), will speak at the event. Formerly a leader of the Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce, Charles is a veteran advocate for all African-American Black-owned businesses.
It’s a time to pause for a moment and look at what’s been accomplished this year, notes President Austin, as we recognize members and supporters who’ve made outstanding contributions of time and energy to the organization. This will include presenting awards for outstanding vendor booths, a focus of the Business Incubator program, and awarding scholarships to local students. There will also be a swearing-in ceremony of upcoming Executive Committee officers and the new Board of Directors–a changing of the guard.
“It’s a good time to dress up, come out and have a nice dinner, and take some time to celebrate the year and where we are,” explains Debra Austin.
The CCBCC Year End Celebration will be held at the Courtyard by Marriott Dallas Event Center at 210 East Stacy Road in Allen, 75002. The event will include fine dining and entertainment by local comedienne Trey Mack and local celebrity DJ Ken Bell. Door prizes, a silent auction, and raffle drawings will be part of the event. Attire will be black tie, dressy cocktail.
Vendor Shopping, Networking & Cocktail Hour starts @ 6:00 p.m. Program & Dinner starts promptly @ 7:00 p.m.
As are all CCBCC events, the Year-End Event will be open to the public. For information on membership, upcoming community events or meetings, or to purchase tickets to the 16th Annual Year End Celebration, please visit the CCBCC website @www.ccblackchamber.org, or contact the 16th Annual Year End Celebration Committee via email at email@example.com.
Interested parties should purchase tickets in advance by November 28. The deadline for sponsorship opportunities, vendors and business advertisements for the souvenir booklet is Monday, November 21.
For additional details, please see 16th Annual Year End Celebration Tickets, Sat, Dec 3, 2022 at 6:00 PM | Eventbrite.