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Welcome to the Manatee Chamber of Commerce

Strengthening Your Business and Our Community

In Memory of Bob Bartz


We have lost a dear friend, valued colleague and selfless leader. Bob Bartz passed on Sunday, February 26, 2017. His wife Vicki and son Jason were at his side. Our grief is coupled with the deepest sympathy we have for what Bob's family is feeling. Our hearts and prayers go out to them now and in the very difficult time ahead.

Bob served as President of the Manatee Chamber of Commerce since 1982. His commitment to the Chamber and his love of Manatee County is surpassed only by his love of his family and friends. His legacy will live on in the progress we see around us and in the continuation of the culture of collaboration and problem-solving that he fostered.

The family has requested that, in lieu of flowers, memorial gifts be made to the Manatee Chamber Foundation, PO Box 321, Bradenton, FL 34206-0321. Click here to donate online.

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State and Federal Advocacy


The Manatee Chamber’s Legislative Committee developed policy positions which will be presented in both Tallahassee and Washington, D.C. The Chamber Board of Directors approved the State and Federal platforms of priorities for the Chamber at their November 2016 Board meeting. Guests, conference calls and research by committee members were coordinated in the development of the Business Agendas.

Click here for the Federal Business Agenda

Click here for the State Business Agenda

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The Real Value of Joining a Local Chamber of Commerce


Being active in the local chamber of commerce is an effective business strategy. It communicates to consumers that a company uses good practices, is reputable, cares about its customers, and is involved in its community. According to a recent study by The Schapiro Group:

  • When consumers know that a small business is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are 49% more likely to think favorably of it and 80% more likely to purchase goods or services from the company in the future.
  • When consumers know that a restaurant franchise is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are 68% more likely to eat at the franchise in the next few months.
  • When consumers know that an insurance company is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are 36% more likely to think favorably of the company.
  • If a company shows that it is highly involved in its local chamber (e.g. sits on the chamber board), consumers are 10% more likely to think that its products stack up better against its competition.
  • When a consumer thinks more favorably of a company because the company is highly involved in its local chamber of commerce, it is because he or she infers that the company is trustworthy and cares about its customers.
  • The positive impacts of chamber membership have remained the same and even increased over time.