Not too long ago, we saw South Florida counties with a daily positive rate average below 3%. Today, the delta variant of COVID-19 has pushed Miami-Dade County’s 7-day positivity rate to nearly 13%. This has made many businesses rethink some of their opening and operational strategies, and our Chamber is no different. While we had hoped to be back in person by now, we have had to adjust our programming in several ways.
First, our Trustee Luncheons for September and October have pivoted back to virtual events. Great programing and content are still being offered, but we felt having 300 people back in person was a bit too risky for the numbers at this time. Second, in the same vein of caring for our members and community leaders, we have made the difficult, but necessary decision to postpone our Sand In My Shoes Award® program honoring David Lawrence Jr. — originally scheduled for Thursday, September 30th at Jungle Island — to a later date. Stay tuned for the new date.
We are still holding mid-size events in person, and outdoors, and we have had several very successful Chamber Connections and Trustee events at some wonderful outside venues with 50- 70 attendees. Check out the Chamber’s exclusive Trustee Soirée for members of Trustee-level or above later this month.
Our committees, meanwhile, are in full swing and working diligently on some of the top issues facing Miami-Dade. I highly encourage you to visit the Chamber’s website to find out more and make sure you get involved. Today, our Nonprofit Committee presents our 20th Annual NOVO Awards, honoring nonprofits that exemplify innovative excellence and feature best practices of not-for-profit businesses. Committee planning discussions around our annual HR Insight’s, Women Leaders in Finance, upcoming Navigating COVID, and a lot more, are in full motion.
The Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce is thrilled to finally announce theGreater Health Trust; the only affordable health initiative offered to Chamber members in the entire state. It gives small businesses, who struggle to keep healthcare cost down, access to discounted health insurance rates through our partners at AvMed health group. This is a giant step in helping our small businesses succeed and keeping our employees healthy.
I want to communicate how greatly appreciative we are for the loyalty and commitment that you have shown our Chamber over the past year and a half. I pray that you, your families, and employees will remain healthy and safe. We have survived hurricanes, depressions and other economic and natural disasters, and this challenge we will as well, together.
Cordially Yours, Alfred Sanchez
President and CEO, Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce
FY 2021-2022 Goals and Board of Directors Officers
We are proud to begin a new fiscal year with our 114th board and committee members stepping into action to accomplish our organization's goals to further develop South Florida's business community. The Greater Miami Chamber values your continuous dedication and support.
We congratulate once again and are excited to be led by elected officers, CareerSource South Florida's Executive Director and GMCC Chair Rick Beasley, Roberto Muñoz, President of The Global Financial Group, LLC as Chair-Elect, and Amy Furness, Co-Managing Shareholder at Carlton Fields as First Vice Chair.
August Trustee Luncheon: Technology Companies New to Miami
The Chamber kicked off our Trustee Luncheon programming featuring a couple of tech companies new to our very own backyard. We held an informative discussion with Maissan Almaskati, Chief Financial Officer of Red 6, and Avi Dabir, FTX US' VP Business Development, moderated by Miami Herald/el Nuevo Herald's President, Nancy Meyer. So how are FTX US and Red 6 acclimating to the Magic City and establishing a footprint in our community?
"A unique thing about Miami is that it has such a strong international presence...and a key point was the support received from local governance for cryptocurrency exchange, you can arguably say Miami is one of the best places to be a crypto company," shared Avi Dabir of FTX US on their choice to do business here. On the other hand, Red 6's Maissan Almaskati, expressed for their company it mattered Florida as the location since the state has significance in the political and defense world, as well as, "the level of engagement we received...helped us make that decision, (along with) the big quality of life proposition that Miami offers and others don't."
Trustee Luncheon Title Sponsor - Florida Power & Light.
Real Estate Summit: MIAMI LEGACY FAMILIES
The Miami market is on fire, being the “hottest” market in America, according to Teresa King Kinney, Chief Executive Officer of MIAMI Association of Realtors. The city is experiencing a high demand rate as there’s an influx of individuals and companies into the region. Remote accessibility has also widened the demand. This appears to be impacting the residential and commercial sides of real estate. “The population influx has been the main catalyst for commercial real estate,” stated David Restainer, Managing Director of Commercial Real Estate at Douglas Elliman.
During Part Two of our Real Estate Summit Series, we presented a thorough overview of the real estate market in Miami and were joined by esteemed family legacies in the business for their take on what’s happening and what has led to it. We received remarks from Chairman, President & CEO of The Allen Morris Company, W. Allen Morris, explaining how for him personally, “a legacy real estate family is giving infusion of energy and new ideas from the next generation.”
The featured panel discussion with members of Miami real estate family companies, the Graham Companies, Goldman Properties, and Cervera Real Estate, spoke on the following key points:
(50:10) Were they pushed or pulled into the shallow or the deep end of real estate?
(1:00:45) The Importance of Mentorship in an Entrepreneurial Family
(1:17:42) The Miami Market and the Impact from the Pandemic
Event Sponsors - Coastal Construction and Douglas Elliman. Supporting Sponsors - BDO USA, LLC, Graham Companies, and MIAMI Association of Realtors.
2021 Legislative Wrap-Up
In June, we had the pleasure to host an annual Legislative Wrap-Up at Miami Dade College with government officials - Senator Annette Taddeo, District 40; Representative Demi Busatta Cabrera, District 114; Representative Nicholas
X. Duran, District 112; and Representative Tom Fabricio, District 103. Our speakers discussed critical issues such as housing, technology, transportation, health, and much more. Thank you for joining us!
Presented by AT&T. Platinum Sponsor - TECO People Gas.
Members In Action
On August 14, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the Caribbean country of Haiti. GMCC Members are taking action to support the people of Haiti in the aftermath of this natural disaster. Additionally, the Surfside community continues to recover from the tragic collapse of the Champlain Towers South on June 24. We have partnered with the South Florida Progress Foundation to set up the Surfside Small Business Recovery Fund to help small family-owned businesses, independent restaurants and retail establishments recover from business operating losses. Support both causes and learn more now.
2021 Senior Executive Orientation
The GMCC's Senior Executive Orientation Program officially began with its first session at Coast Guard Miami. The program is dedicated to newly relocated executives and is designed to help their transition to Miami by connecting them to people and giving them an in-depth understanding of our community, it’s issues and challenges. Learn more about SEO here.
The Return of Chamber Connections
If you never had the opportunity to attend one of our networkers or as we call them, Chamber Connections, you may have missed getting to know other business members and expanding your network. We are glad to bring these back at a certain capacity and help introduce you to build new relationships with professionals in the Miami area. Stay tuned for the next one.
How important is universal connectivity for the success of our workforce and students? Extremely. The future of education and developing talent in Miami revolves around accessibility to technology and digital literacy.
Chamber held a roundtable discussion covering:
(11:36) Professionals Sharing their Insight on Universal Connectivity
(31:25) The Miami Connected Program
at a Local High School and A Student's Experience
(53:42) Student Data on Learning Impact Due to a Lack of Connectivity
Sponsored by CareerSource South Florida.
View PDF of August 2021 President's Report