West Orange Chamber of Commerce Facilitating Opportunity
West Orange Chamber of Commerce Facilitating Opportunity
West Orange Chamber of Commerce Facilitating Opportunity


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Read to Sydney
Bates New England Seafood

Kathleen Roat, Chairman
Kathleen Roat & Company, Inc.

Jaclyn Whiddon, Board Liaison
The Whiddon Group, LLC

The Mission of the Ambassadors: A Chamber Ambassador Committee shall serve the membership of the Chamber.

The Committee shall serve:

  1. As official hosts of the Chamber at Ribbon Cuttings, Groundbreakings, Anniversaries, "Business After Hours" and other Chamber functions approved by the committee;
  2. To promote membership to prospective and current members, programs and projects of the Chamber, at all times;
  3. To recognize businesses and individuals under the “We Noticed Awards,” “CFO - Chief Facilitator of Opportunity” and “Member Appreciation” visits.

The Ambassadors are happy to celebrate a Groundbreaking, Ribbon Cutting/Grand Opening or Anniversary Celebration with you at your business location.

Click here to see the Ambassadors in Action.  

Click here for more information on these special opportunities.

This program has an application and selection process to join.

For more information on becoming an Ambassador, please contact the Chamber office at 407-656-1304.


2017 West Orange Chamber Ambassadors:

  • Joan Bailey, Edgewood Children's Ranch
  • Pam Birdsong, Proforma Albrecht & Co.
  • Jim Densmore, Parkland International Realty, Inc.
  • Dorcas Dillard, Votum Construction LLC
  • Denise Fisher, Aflac
  • Cindy Gainey, BB&T
  • Chris Garcia, American Forklift Rentals
  • Pat Gleason
  • Chesta Hembrooke, Choose2BHealthy
  • Mike LaPorte, LaPorte Financial, LLC
  • Joseph McClellan, Joseph J. McClellan Insurance Agency, Inc.
  • Erik Oller, Baldwin Fairchild Cemeteries & Funeral Home
  • JoAnne Quarles, Treasure Title Insurance Agency, Inc.
  • Kathleen Roat, Kathleen Roat & Company, Inc.
  • Lenny Stark, Best Cleaners
  • Jaclyn Whiddon, The Whiddon Group, LLC
  • Lauren Wolf, Human Motion Associates
  • Bruce Young, Edward Jones

Recurring Monthly Meetings:
1st Friday of the month, 8:15 a.m. at the Chamber office

Dorcas Dillard, Chairman
Votum Construction LLC

The Education Committee of the West Orange Chamber is comprised of educator and business members working together.

The Committee works to facilitate the following programs and activities;

S.O.A.R. “Students of Achievement and Renown”:
is an award of merit, recognizing students in the fifth, eighth and eleventh grades from Chamber member schools, public and private, who have shown initiative, good citizenship, commitment and personal growth in the classroom. One student from each member school is recognized at the Education Awards Ceremony. A specialized medallion provided by Trophies Unlimited is presented to each student.

Annual program which gives business leaders an opportunity to speak to local elementary, middle and high school students about academics, careers and their future as well as describing the role of a Chamber of Commerce in the business community. Teach-In 2017 will take place in November (exact 2017 date to be announced). Visit www.foundationforocps.org for more information.

The Education Awards:
The Chamber hosts the annual "Education Awards Ceremony" presented by Orlando Health, in early spring of each school year at a Chamber member high school, i.e. Dr. Phillips, Maynard P. Evans, Ocoee, Olympia and West Orange High School. This ceremony honors the student recipients of the S.O.A.R. Awards and Danniel J. Petro/West Orange Chamber Scholarship Fund, and is the formal graduation ceremony for the participants of the W.O.P.T.E. Program. Medallions for each participant are provided by Trophies Unlimited of Winter Garden. This ceremony is an opportunity for parents, grandparents, friends, family and educators to recognize the students’ accomplishments and meet with elected officials, including Orange County Public School Board members, as well as Chamber Board Members. This year’s ceremony will take place on Monday, May 8, 2017 from 6:00-8:00pm at Evans High School. For sponsorship information, please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

W.O.P.T.E. "West Orange Program for Tomorrow’s Entrepreneurs":
The primary mission of the W.O.P.T.E. program, sponsored by Bright Future Electric is to raise the awareness of our youth regarding the West Orange County business community and all it has to offer. With increased awareness of the area, it is hoped that students will be better informed regarding career opportunities, right here in West Orange County. W.O.P.T.E. is a six month program for select 11th grade students from Chamber member high schools. Several of the sessions are field-trip like activities that expose the students to the history, legal and government, and physical environment of West Orange County. In two of the sessions, the Chamber partners with Junior Achievement of Central Florida to present two JA programs. The JA “Be Entrepreneurial” program allows students to develop a business and a business plan providing them with the skills to be tomorrow’s entrepreneur. The facilitator for this program is Deb Linden, Chairman of the DL Foundation. In addition, the students participate in the JA “Job Shadow” programs in which the students visit two large employers in West Orange County to understand the many employment opportunities available; Manheim Orlando – one of the largest auto auctions in the country and Health Central, a part of the Orlando Health system.

The West Orange Chamber is proud to provide the opportunity for students to apply for college or technical school scholarships. These scholarship applications are available to students who attend a Chamber member high school, public or private, and live within the Chamber service area and who are the children or dependents of Chamber member employers or their employees. This scholarship is known as The Danniel J. Petro/West Orange Chamber Scholarship Fund. Its funds are earned through the contribution of $1 from ticket sales from most Chamber events and by a very generous annual contribution of $5,000 by its name sake, Danniel J. Petro. Dan, as he was known to all within the Chamber, was a long-time supporter, Trustee, Board member and Past Chairman. Dan just prior to his passing in March 2013, asked his family Trust, The Petro Family Foundation to provide $5,000 annually to the West Orange Chamber Scholarship Fund and to have its funds dispersed in two $2,500 scholarships. This Scholarship will make it possible for eligible students from Chamber member high schools, in good standing, to further their education at Valencia College (any campus), Orange Technical College (formerly Westside Tech) or the University of Central Florida. The scholarship application is available to download by clicking here. All completed applications should be emailed to the chamber by midnight 4/9/17. All mailed applications must be received in our office by 4/7/17. 

Staff Liaison: Carrie Wilson

For more information about the Education Committee, contact Carrie Wilson at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call 407-656-1304 ext 4.

The Education Committee meets quarterly, at 8am, at the Chamber Office. Next meeting date is 4/11/17
(meetings are typically held in the months of January, April, August, November but always check the online chamber calendar to confirm as dates and times are subject to change)

Maria Mazzeo, Chairman
TD Bank

The Small Business Development Team (SBDT) exists to provide small business owners, their managers and employees with the tools, resources and network to enhance their businesses. They accomplish this goal by offering existing Chamber members a vast selection of educational, networking and fundamental business events and programs. This committee is tasked with gathering member feedback and suggestions for upcoming event topics and speakers and bringing those programs to light.

For more information about SBDT contact Kelly Jones via email or at the Chamber office 407-656-1304 ext. 5.

SBDT meets on the 2nd Monday of every other month, 8:30am at the Chamber Office.