Part 1: Local Arts Agencies & Chambers of Commerce - The Very Basics

image About Part One

Part one of the "How to Partner with Your Local Chamber of Commerce" collection will establish a foundational knowledge of local chambers of commerce, the networks in which they operate and that serve them, how to navigate a traditional business environment, and basic activations a local arts agency can undertake to establish a partnership. Participants will hear from chamber and arts leaders and gain perspective on chamber priorities and challenges and learn to identify the various chamber and economic development entities in their communities. Participants are encouraged to use the toolkit as complimentary learning, and participate in a live discussion with presenters once completing the 3-part on-demand webinar series. 

View the three sessions by pressing "view web content-on-demand" button on the left side of the page. 

Session 1 – Understanding the Chambers of Commerce Landscape 

In session 1, local arts leaders will gain introductory knowledge of local chambers of commerce, how they operate, their general priorities, opportunities, and challenges. Sheree Anne Kelly, President/CEO of the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives will provide a broad overview of the national chambers landscape and tips for engaging with local chamber leaders.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will gain an introductory knowledge of local chambers of commerce, how they operate, their general priorities, and challenges.
  • Participants will gain an understanding of the national chambers landscape, the organizations that service them, and the relationships between different kinds of affinity or community-specific chambers. This includes relationships between the US Chamber, ACCE, the National Black, Hispanic, Disability, and Asian American Chambers, and how these groups intersect with economic development agencies.

Session 2 – Navigating Your Chamber and Business Community 

In session 2, participants will gain insight as to how to best navigate new relationships with the chamber and its business members. Attendees will consider how to reach beyond their role as an “arts person” and translate their work and goals into the frame of the business community. Basic business concepts such as KPIs, ROI, verticals and more will be discussed as a way for arts leaders to gain fluency in business ‘speak.’

Learning Objectives:

  • With a basic understanding of how local chambers of commerce operate and their priorities, participants will learn how to navigate business-to-business (B2B) conversations and relationships within the chamber membership.
  • Participants will hear about communicating with clear value propositions and how to listen for connecting points with new chamber partners.
  • Participants will begin to learn how to translate their work and assets into the business network and chamber of commerce frame.

Session 3 – Getting Started on a Partnership 

In session 3, local arts leaders will hear about different kinds of basic activations and/or programs they can undertake with their local chamber of commerce in order to build and deepen their relationship. Participants will hear from Jill McMillan Palm about the Arts & Business Council’s partnership with the Nashville Chamber and how they work together alongside other municipal partners to produce the Periscope program.

 Learning Objectives:

  • With a foundational understanding about how local chambers of commerce operate and how to navigate conversations and the spaces within them, participants will start to hear about how to create simple activations to deepen their chamber partnership.
  • Participants will learn how to identify strengths and capacities for who can lead or take responsibility for different aspects of an activation.
  • Participants will hear about how to build on a simple program or activation for long-term partnership development. 

This is Part 1 of the "How to Partner with Your Local Chamber of Commerce" collection. To register for Part 1 only, click the REGISTER button on this page. To register for the entire collection (including Parts 1, 2, and 3) please visit the collection page and press REGISTER. Questions? Please email


We are pleased to be able to offer registration support for those with limited resources who wish to register for this ArtsU Intensive. Sign up for the ArtsU Support program here. 

Sheree Anne Kelly

President & CEO

Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives

Sheree Anne is the head of the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) representing more than 10,000 industry professionals. ACCE serves the community via professional development, innovative problem solving, best practices, and industry thought leadership.

Previously, Sheree Anne was senior vice president of the Public Affairs Council and executive director of their foundation. During her 16 years at the global association, she served as chief public affairs expert, and oversaw thought leadership, professional development, consulting and benchmarking. During her tenure, she opened the Council’s first international office in Brussels.

Prior roles include positions in government affairs at the National Association of Home Builders, and on the corporate development and corporate relations teams at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Sheree Anne holds an MBA from Georgetown, a Master of Arts in Government from Johns Hopkins and a Bachelor of Arts from Bucknell University. Current industry leadership roles include serving on the executive committee of the World Chambers Federation and as a member of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Chamber Committee of 100. She’s also a board member of the Engalitcheff Institute on Comparative Political and Economic Systems and immediate past-chair of the Bucknell Institute for Public Policy.

Kelly Johnson

Executive Director

Arts & Business Alliance of Eugene

Kelly graduated from the University of Colorado at Denver in 2006 with a degree in Theatre, Film, and TV.  She worked as a stage manager and on run crews at the Curious Theatre Company and the Arvada Center for Arts and Humanities. She decided to pursue a career in Arts Administration and attended graduate school at the University of Oregon. Upon graduating, she worked in the nonprofit sector as a development manager and director for seven years. She returned to the arts world in 2018, to lead the Arts & Business Alliance of Eugene.

Brittany Quick-Warner

President & CEO

Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce

Brittany Quick-Warner is the President and CEO of the Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce. In six years at the Eugene Chamber she has successfully served in multiple capacities including advertising sales associate, event manager, and Director of Business Advocacy for four years. Beginning in late 2016, Brittany served as interim President & CEO during sudden medical leave and passing of the long-term President & CEO. During that time Brittany stepped up to lead the staff and membership through significant organizational grief and transition and was ultimately selected in September 2017 to serve as the next President & CEO of the Eugene Chamber. Brittany is the youngest and first known woman to lead the 1200 member organization.

A native of Missouri, Quick¬-Warner moved to Eugene in 2012. She holds two degrees from the University of Missouri¬, a master's degree in public administration with a focus in nonprofit management and an undergraduate degree in soil, environmental and atmospheric science. She has been active in the community since her arrival, serving as a board member of economic development agencies Greater Eugene Inc. and the Regional Accelerator and Innovation Network (RAIN Eugene), BRING Recycling, Better Eugene Springfield Transportation and the Junior League of Eugene as well as serving on the Eugene Sustainability Commission. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Western Association of Chamber Executives. She and her husband, Erik, have been small business owners since 2012. They own Blue Bus Creatives, a media production company.

Jill McMillan Palm

Executive Director

Arts & Business Council of Greater Nashville

As Executive Director of the Arts & Business Council of Greater Nashville, Jill McMillan Palm provides education, resources, and opportunities at the intersection of arts and business. Before moving to Nashville in 2017 for this role, she worked with arts organizations and creative businesses in Los Angeles, CA; Phoenix, AZ; and Boston, MA. Using her breadth of experience and skills, Jill sustains and promotes the Arts & Business Council’s mission to create a thriving, sustainable creative culture in Nashville; ensures that the organization’s service to artists is of the highest quality; and is an advocate for artists at the local, state, and national levels. She is a member of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce’s Music Industry Advisory Group and has served on the Americans for the Arts Private Sector Council since 2018. She was elected to the Nashville Emerging Leaders class of 2019, and was named as a finalist for the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce’s Emerging Leaders Award in the Arts, Entertainment, and Music Business category in 2020.

Originally from Northwest Indiana, Jill holds a BA in Integrated Marketing Communications from Pepperdine University. A lifelong arts enthusiast, she continues to dabble in dance, music, and visual art, all to varying degrees of success. In her spare time, you can find her taking in a concert or performance; enjoying an iced coffee with a good book; or wandering the world with her husband and their dog.   

Back to Package


Session 1 – Understanding the Chambers of Commerce Landscape
Session 2 – Navigating Your Chamber and Business Community
Session 3 – Getting Started on a Partnership
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