Chamber News

Get the Facts on Envision Alachua

If Alachua County had the opportunity to create 30,000 high-quality jobs at all educational levels over the next 50 years, protect land twice the size of Paynes Prairie from development, and establishes a water ethic to cut water consumption in half – would you support the effort to turn the opportunity into reality?

Well there is such an opportunity: Envision Alachua — one of the top priorities for the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce. Take advantage of two Chamber-led efforts to get fact-based education on the Envision Alachua Sector Plan for Plum Creek’s 60,000 acres of land in East Alachua County.

  1. Lunch, Learn and Ask: Sign up to attend the Chamber’s on-going “Opportunity is Knocking” series on First Fridays at 11:30 a.m. to hear from and talk with local experts about the plan. Visit the events calendar for upcoming dates and locations.
  2. Take a Tour: Visit to take a virtual tour or sign up to go out and see the land for yourself on an in-person tour ( You’ll get to see first-hand where the job centers and conservation lands will be located.

More than 2,000 people in our community and a task force of local leaders helped developed the plan, which has the potential to transfer Greater Gainesville and our region.

In the coming weeks, the Chamber will provide additional opportunities for our members and the community to learn about and engage in supporting Envision Alachua. Visit, where you can sign up for our weekly eJournal to stay abreast of new developments.

Susan Davenport Steps into Role of Chamber’s Interim President/CEO


The leadership transition at the Gainesville Area Chamber is now officially underway and Susan Davenport—who is now serving as the Chamber’s Interim President and CEO—has immersed herself in the Chamber’s membership, public policy, workforce and operations activities.

“Susan is performing skillfully as the Chamber’s Interim President/CEO at this time,” said Chamber Board Chairman John V. Carlson, who serves as President/CEO at CPPI. “I have the utmost confidence that under her leadership, the Chamber staff will continue to focus on “business as usual” and maintain its culture of high performance.”

Davenport—who until now has served the Chamber as Vice President of Economic Development—is enthusiastic about the road ahead.

“I feel confident I can lead the Chamber’s staff through this transition because this talented and dynamic team collectively knows more about what this community has to offer than anyone out there,” said Davenport. “Since joining the Chamber staff in 2013, I have had the pleasure of participating in all areas of the chamber’s lines of businesses. We won’t skip a beat in our daily execution of the Chamber’s mission to increase economic prosperity, business growth and community progress.”

Since joining the Chamber, Davenport has spearheaded economic development activities resulting in the announcement of nearly 1,400 new jobs and nearly $400 million in new capital investment.

Gainesville Area Chamber Ranked Top Three Finalist for National Award


The Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives has ranked the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce in the top three 2015 National Chamber of the Year finalists among similarly sized chambers. The award designates that recognized chambers have demonstrated not only organizational strength in operations and member services, but also have shown community leadership by impacting priorities such as education, transportation, business development and quality of life.

“This award validates the Chamber’s work in leading the transformation of Greater Gainesville into a global hub of talent, innovation and opportunity,” said Gainesville Area Chamber Interim President/CEO Susan Davenport. “Moving forward we will continue to raise the bar in facilitating and securing projects which provide opportunities throughout our region.”

Transportation is Key Among Chamber’s 2015 Federal Priorities


The Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce recently released its 2015 Federal Policy Agenda, which includes seven key areas of advocacy and representation— talent, innovation, opportunity, transportation, renewable energy, water and quality of life – on behalf of businesses and organizations in the Gainesville region on a national level.

Strengthening transportation infrastructure is among multiple federal policy priorities that would help Greater Gainesville move to the next level.

The road network is the backbone of the regional transportation infrastructure as it facilitates the flow of people, services and goods.  The transit system is anchored by RTS, the regional bus service.

The Chamber supports federal funding for SW 62nd Boulevard, RTS bus fleet replacement and expansion, RTS transit amenities and technology improvements, and senior transportation services.

Visit to view the Agenda in its entirety.


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