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Checking in with the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber Councils – August 2021

Were teaming up with community partners all over Northeastern Pennsylvania to bring you a closer look at what makes our amazing counties, cities, towns and villages so unique. Keep your eye on this space for regular contributions from local organizations, visitors bureaus, tourism boards, chambers and so much more.

What’s New with Our Chamber Volunteer Councils?


The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce wants to keep you updated each month with everything that their volunteer councils have planned this year, including some great community events and initiatives that you can join!


The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council

The DEI Council has just launched a new Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Mentorship Program. Through this 12-month program, they will help create an ecosystem of mentorship to help diverse-owned businesses succeed and thrive while doing business in the Wyoming Valley. Mentees eligible for this program are those who lead or own a business in the Wyoming Valley and identify as female, BIPOC, LGBTQ+, or as an individual with disabilities. Mentees will benefit from receiving career advice and tips, networking advice and contacts, constructive feedback, communication skills development, improved goal setting, and exposure to new and different perspectives. Mentors for this program will be established individuals that lead or own a business in the Wyoming Valley and identify as female, BIPOC, LGBTQ+, or as an individual with disabilities. If you are interested in learning more about this program and how you can get involved in the first cohort, click here.


The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber’s Women’s Council

The Women’s Council just hosted their first in-person networking event of the year at the end of July called Sip & Learn: Entertaining with the Athena® Recipients. The event featured guest speakers Ruth Corcoran, President of Corcoran Communication, and 2020 Athena® Award honoree Kathi Bankes, Director of Catering and Special Events at Culinary Creations by Metz & Ruth’s Chris Steak House and 2021 Athena® Award honoree. The council spent a wonderful evening learning from Ruth and Kathi on the patio at the Holiday Inn Wilkes Barre – East Mountain.

Coming up, the council is excited to announce that they have added a new Young Professional Women’s Leadership Award category to the 2021 Young Professionals Awards. This award is from the Athena® International organization and recognizes an exceptional young professional who demonstrates the highest level of professional excellence in her business or profession, has devoted time and energy to the community in a meaningful way, and, most especially, has generously assisted other women in attaining their full potential.


The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber’s Young Professionals Council

The Young Professionals Council is currently selling tickets for the 2021 Young Professionals Awards, happening on September 14th at The Garden Drive-In. This event will recognize amazing young professionals helping to move our region forward. The community is invited to come and see the exciting live announcements of this year’s winners and honor these amazing young leaders in our area! This event is presented by Coal Creative and put on in partnership with Times Leader Media Group. To find out who this year’s top three honorees are in each category, click here.

The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber’s Government Affairs Council

The Government Affairs Council will be hosting the Annual Survey and the Legislative Forum in the coming months. The questions and responses from the Annual Survey will inform the Legislative Forum event, which is happening on October 8th. The feedback from the survey will be used to develop questions and discussion topics for our local and state representatives, who will be joining the council and community at the Legislative Forum event.


The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber’s Nonprofit Council and Ambassadors Council

The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber’s Nonprofit Council and Ambassadors Council would love to welcome new members at their next meetings. If you would like to join any of the councils mentioned above, or sign up to stay updated on their news and events, click here.

Spotlighting Our Amazing Chamber Members

The Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber councils have also started to highlight some of the amazing small businesses and nonprofits in our community that make our area unique. The Young Professionals Council; Women’s Council; and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council have three amazing organizations and their leaders spotlighted below!


Meet This Month’s Young Professionals Network Small Business Highlight: Jason Nataupsky D.M.D., Dentist at Nataupsky Family Dentistry

Nataupsky Family Dentistry is the oldest, most experienced family dental office in the Wyoming Valley, having been started in Wilkes-Barre in 1945. As the 3rd generation of dentists in the family, the team makes sure that their specialty remains creating happy, healthy experiences for all of their incredible patients. They have been able to accomplish this with their friendly team, their passion for advancement within dental technology and most importantly, kindness! They firmly believe that a warm, positive, and clean environment helps to pave the road for successful future visits.

Follow, like, and share them on Facebook and Instagram, as well as visit their new website to learn more about who they are and why they are different! Nataupsky Family Dentistry is open five days a week at Riverside Commons on 575 Pierce St., Suite 201 in Kingston. They offer early, lunch, and late hours to accommodate even the toughest schedules.


Meet This Month’s Women’s Network Small Business Highlight: Tara Priest-Rhodes, Owner & Vacation Specialist at Tara Rhodes-Dream Vacations

Tara Rhodes-Dream Vacations is a full-service travel agency specializing in travel to international destinations and cruise vacations. They cater to couples, families, and groups, creating vacation memories that will last a lifetime. Give them a call today so they can “exceed your expectations!”

You can reach them by phone at (570) 230-3999, visit them online, or find them on social media @tararhodestravel. To learn more about the Wilkes University Small Business Development Center, which Tara mentions as a resource, click here.


Meet This Month’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council Highlights: Maryann Velez, President/CEO/Co-founder of United NEPA Alliance and Nicole Dante, Secretary/CHRO/Co-founder of United NEPA Alliance

At United NEPA Alliance, it is their mission to help those in need by providing resources that aim to end poverty and homelessness, while meeting the needs of a diverse population.

United NEPA works to build strong vibrant communities by implementing sustainable programs that meet the needs of the communities they serve.

To learn more or get involved, visit them on social on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, or on their website.

*Featured photo (top) courtesy of Park Multimedia

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