Skip to content

Cloverdale Chamber reaffirms itself as independent voice for East Surrey businesses

Cloverdale won’t join new mega-chamber: Wheatley
Surrey Police Service Chief Norm Lipinski takes questions after a speech during a luncheon in Cloverdale in 2022. Scott Wheatley (left) and the Cloverdale District Chamber of Commerce hosted the luncheon. (Photo: Malin Jordan)

After the recent merger of two Surrey-area boards of trade, the Cloverdale Chamber is reaffirming itself as an “independent voice for business.”

Scott Wheatley, the executive director of the Cloverdale District Chamber of Commerce, told the Cloverdale Reporter his chamber won’t join the other two boards of trade.

Both the Surrey Board of Trade and the South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce officially merged to become the Surrey & White Rock Board of Trade (SWRBOT).

According to a release issued on May 9 by the two groups, they voted “overwhelmingly” in favour of the merger.

“The board and staff of the (Cloverdale) Chamber look forward to remaining an independent voice for small- to medium-sized businesses in our designated areas—under the Board of Trade Act—within Clayton, Cloverdale, and the Campbell Heights business parks, north and south,” said Wheatley.

He noted the Cloverdale Chamber has been serving the needs of business on the east side of Surrey since 1949.

“We serve over 500 members, advocating on their behalf, holding a variety of networking events, promoting our members, and offering them a variety of the same benefits offered by more expensive boards of trade,” he added.

SEE ALSO: ‘No chance’ Cloverdale Chamber merging with SBOT

Adam Smith, president of the Cloverdale Chamber’s board of directors, told the Cloverdale Reporter in March there is no desire on his part, or the board’s part, to ever merge.

In an emailed statement, Smith said the board’s most important mandate is to support its members.

“We feel very fortunate to have a local chamber that supports community-based initiatives and connects with local business individually,” Smith noted. “The Cloverdale Chamber looks to work collaboratively with all of the business organizations that support a dynamic and growing Surrey.”

He said while the Surrey Board of Trade has greater staff and resources allocated to advocate for various things, he sees a great opportunity to work with them as collaborative partners on a myriad of issues that concern members in both groups.

“As non-profit business organizations, we need to work together respectfully as partners and share resources where we can,” Smith added. “We do not have any interest in becoming part of a mega-chamber where only the rich and powerful can afford to have a voice or sponsor events, where small business members are no longer individuals but only numbers that get lost in the crowd.”

Wheatley said the strength of the Cloverdale Chamber has always been its connection with the businesses it serves.

“(We) are proud of our 75 years of independent service,” he said. “We continue to thrive to be the most inclusive, hometown, welcoming Chamber in Surrey.”

Malin Jordan

About the Author: Malin Jordan

Malin is the editor of the Cloverdale Reporter.
Read more