Tempe Chamber Of Commerce

Your Success Is Our Business

Get Out of Glitches-3 Ways to Secure Information On Your Computer

Posted on | August 11, 2016 | No Comments

by Margo Brown, Wave Productivity

margoblogpicHere are three things every office needs to get out of technology glitches. In the long run, it will save you time, money and help you be more productive. Back it up, secure it and get out of technology issues quickly.

  1. Have a way to backup your computer and ability to check that it is backing up correctly.

Make sure your computer backup is offsite. If you’re using cloud computing, that’s great. Having a backup to your backup might be good too. Try using these: Backblaze has no storage limit and is very cost effective at $5 a month.  Crashplan has a great interface, good encryption and is equally inexpensive. Crashplan has some great reviews including a thumbs up from my own computer guy.

From experience, I had a client who faithfully backed up her computer. When she spilled coffee on it, she wasn’t alarmed, she had the backup. Or did she? When she went to go retrieve her latest backup it wasn’t there! Nothing. Nada. Zilch.

Send information and documents to the cloud. Get a service to back it up each night. Just make sure you’re backing up your computer and check the backup.

  1. The ability to have passwords on hand, every time, and keep them secure.

One thing I’ve seen clients do is type in a password. It doesn’t work, they try another, that doesn’t work. Let’s try another. It doesn’t work either.  Lastpass “remembers your passwords so you can focus on the more important things in life.” Stop guessing and trying to remember. Use a program that can help you manage and remember passwords securely.

Dashlane creates and saves passwords while keeping them secure. It’s a bummer to have to root around your desk or computer looking for that post it note with all your important password info. Plus, you know that’s not the most secure way to handle passwords.

  1. Get a great technology person to help you out in a jam.

One thing I know, I’m into productivity but not so much into technology. I’m into the habit changes needed in an office. Once those habits are in place then finding the technology to support those changes is what works best. Not the other way around. So I admit, I’m no techie.  I look to my tech guy to help me out when email stops working on my phone, issues I might have with my blog or when my website gets buggy. It’s about finding someone who is passionate about their work and patient with you when you have a zillion questions. When you have a glitch you won’t waste time, you’ll know who to call.

Margo Brown is a Productivity Coach and Professional Organizer with Wave Productivity and works with entrepreneurs, small business owners and business professionals to help them get more focused, organized and productive in their workplace. She serves the Tempe and Phoenix area in Arizona. If you want to get more organized in your office call 602-677-8275 or email margo@waveproductivity.com

Protect Your Business – ADA Compliance Lawsuits Target Tempe, Valley Cities

Posted on | August 10, 2016 | No Comments

More than 1,000 lawsuits have been filed against small businesses and property owners in and around the valley by lawyers seeking compensation for alleged ADA compliance violations.

ABC 15 reportsR7-8N_cmyk, “Small businesses throughout the Phoenix area are crying foul at a recent spate of lawsuits filed against them by disability-rights advocates, contending they’ve been unfairly targeted for minor violations by serial plaintiffs looking to make a quick buck.” The lawsuits focus on elements of parking-lot accessibility, such as parking-space widths and signage, and have hit businesses in Tempe, Scottsdale, Phoenix, Mesa, Chandler and Gilbert over the past six months.

An ADA Forum with updates and more information is being presented by the Mesa Chamber of Commerce. The forum is offered at no cost and is open to the public. It will be held on August 23 from 4:00 – 5:30 p.m. at the Phoenix Marriott Mesa, 200 N. Centennial Way in Mesa. There is no cost to attend. RSVP here.

You can also view or download a free guide to determine if your business is in compliance.

Gail Is Nothing But Trouble! A Message from the Tempe Chamber Chairman of the Board

Posted on | August 9, 2016 | No Comments

Brian Wood, Chairman of the Board

Brian Wood, Chairman of the Board

With all due respect, to anyone named “Gail” – those Gails are nothing but trouble!

In every aspect of our business and personal lives, elements exist that can limit our potential and restrict us from leveraging our gifts – driving change and achieving greatness.  The good news is that we have the choice to empower GAIL or squash her (like the bug that she is!).

Let’s talk about GAIL.

She is created by our experiences, values and observations.  She receives strength from negative thoughts, generating the wrong emotions and delivering results that don’t serve us.

G – The Gremlin or inner critic inside all of us.  This irritating little voice arrives in many forms and tries to convince us that we are “just not good enough.”  It can show up in many ways, including fear or doubt.  If given enough power, it can make us forget about what attracted us to being an entrepreneur, what we love most about our community and our passion for being effective leaders at home and work.

Asking ourselves “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” when considering calculated business risks can help us overcome the idea that we are meant to be average or live small.  This is simply not the case.

AAssumptions stem from personal experiences associated with failure.  Very powerful, as there are specific emotions connected to this perceived failure.  Very damaging in that this mindset leads us to assume failure and anticipate success.  Imagine the business application here relative to innovation – or lack thereof.  “We tried that before and it didn’t work.”

Good insight.  Solid.  Thanks for bringing that energy to the table!

Imagine what is possible when we assume abundance and extreme success for the Tempe Chamber of Commerce, the business community and all the members we serve.

I – So I was shot down when asking someone out in the eighth grade (no surprise).  I could take the assumption approach – I’ll never ask out anyone else (“I tried that before and it didn’t work”).  Maybe I avoid the assumption but select an inaccurate interpretation of my rejection – concluding that she said “no” because of my wardrobe.  My clouded interpretation could result in a waste of time, energy and money.  Without diversity in thought and the strength of a team, we can often head down the wrong strategic path based on incorrect interpretations.  Asking ourselves “What’s an alternate interpretation?” can help us break through closed-minded thinking, elevating our leadership style to one that’s dynamic.

L – In 1954, plenty of highly intelligent people insisted that running a mile under 4 minutes was not possible.  The world listened to this perspective and believed it to be true.  That was until Roger Bannister shattered this limiting belief by doing the seemingly impossible.  Incredibly, dozens of people in the following years achieved this goal after the theory was proven wrong.

It’s okay to challenge and dare the experts – aiming higher than anyone “allows” us to.

Change can be new and even scary based on uncertainty.  However, changing the way we show up each and every single day is entirely within our control.  We have free will and a choice to either be overwhelmed and afraid of change (completely understandable – but don’t live there)  – or the opportunity to harness the energy of change, creating an exciting adventure in all aspects of our business and professional lives.

Choose wisely.

Brian Wood
Chairman of the Board, Tempe Chamber of Commerce

Tempe Chamber Endorses Lucier, Plumlee & Dial in Legislative Primaries

Posted on | August 5, 2016 | No Comments

Celeste Plumlee

Celeste Plumlee


Jeff Dial


David Lucier

Tempe residents will choose candidates for the Arizona Legislature in three contested primaries, two in north Tempe and one in the south.  The Tempe Chamber supports incumbent Jeff Dial in the District 18 Senate Republican primary in the south, newcomer David Lucier in the District 26 Senate Democratic Primary in the north, and incumbent Celeste Plumlee in the District 26 House Democratic Primary.

In making its endorsement, the Chamber considered the candidates’ voting records, written responses to a questionnaire and in-person interviews.  Endorsement are made for the candidates who will best represent the needs of the Tempe business community.

“Senator Jeff Dial has a years-long track record of supporting business,” said Mary Ann Miller, Tempe Chamber President/CEO.  “Representative Plumlee has been very open to listening to our issues in her first term in office.  We believe David Lucier will also carefully consider our ideas and concerns.”

The primary election is August 30, and early ballots are in the mail.  To request an early ballot or find a voting location, go to http://recorder.maricopa.gov/elections/.

Brian Wood Named Chairman of the Board of Tempe Chamber of Commerce

Posted on | June 24, 2016 | No Comments

Brian Wood assumed the position of Chairman of the Board of the Tempe Chamber of Commerce on July 1. He is Senior District Manager at Waste Management.

Brian Wood, Chairman of the Board

Brian Wood, Chairman of the Board

Wood earned his MBA in 2014 from the University of Phoenix while balancing family, community involvement and work life at Waste Management.

He is also:

– A Certified Professional Coach and the Founder of ICE – Integrative Core Energy Coaching Network.
– A Board Member with “Linking Sports and Communities”
– A Big Brother with New Pathways for Youth
– A Certified Agent with the NBA Players Association
– A graduate of Valley Leadership Class 32

Ramon Elias Honored with Spirit of Tempe Award

Posted on | June 17, 2016 | No Comments

Ramon Elias

Ramon Elias

Ramon Elias was presented with the Tempe Chamber of Commerce’s Spirit of Tempe Award on June 16 at the organization’s Annual Luncheon.

The award recognizes a lifetime achievement of service, dedication and contribution to the community and honors hard work and strong commitment to improving the quality of life in Tempe.

Elias, retired President and CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the East Valley, is one of the organization’s most respected leaders nationally. He is the first executive in Arizona to receive the prestigious “Masters and Mentors” award, the highest honor bestowed upon a Boys & Girls Club staff member. Only 30 people have ever received this honor.

A graduate of Arizona State University, Elias began his career in the early 1970s as a Physical Education Director at the Boys & Girls Club’s Ladmo Branch in Tempe. He later became a Program Director, Director of Operations, Executive Director and eventually President/CEO in 1996.

Under his leadership the organization added six new branches in Apache Junction, Chandler, Gilbert, Guadalupe, Mesa, Queen Creek, Tempe and the Gila River Indian Community. He also oversaw the Mesa Arts Academy, a K-8 charter school focused on the arts.

Elias is past president of the Tempe East Rotary Club, Sun Devil Lion’s Club, and Boys & Girls Clubs Professional Association. He is a former member of the Valley of the Sun United Way’s Executive Council. He also was named the East Valley Man of the Year by the Fresh Start Women’s Foundation in 2009.

“Ramon has given so much of his time and energy to our community,” said Mary Ann Miller, President and CEO of the Tempe Chamber of Commerce. “He is an inspiration. His strength of character and dedication to service have benefitted so many people. I’m humbled to have the opportunity to recognize his with this honor.”

Peggy Moroney Receives Outstanding Community Leader Award

Posted on | June 17, 2016 | No Comments

Tempe Leadership presented its highest honor, the Outstanding Community Leader Award, to Peggy Moroney at the Tempe Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Luncheon on June 16. The honor  is an annual distinction awarded to Tempe Leadership graduates that have displayed outstanding leadership in the Tempe community.

Moroney, a longtime Tempe resident, is a graduate of Tempe Leadership Class XXVIII who is involved in a wide variety of organizations and activities.

Peggy Moroney

Peggy Moroney

She has researched and developed programs for the Tempe History Museum, The Petersen House, Desert Botanical Gardens, Eisendrath House and The Tempe Center for the Arts where she volunteers as docent and educator.

During her tenure in Tempe Leadership, her class developed the Teen Resource Center now known as Threadz at Tempe High School.  Moroney worked with her classmates to transform a neglected classroom into a clothing resource center for teens.

She is also on the Tempe Historic Preservation Board and is working on a variety of projects including walking tours through downtown Tempe and a docent program for the Eisendrath House that was recently restored.

Tempe Leadership President Janeen Rohovit said Moroney was a clear choice to receive the award. “Peggy is such an important and valuable member of our community,” said Rohovit. “Her leadership skills in the projects she is involved with help bring Tempe’s history and culture to life. She is known, loved and respected by so many people and we are proud to honor her with this award.”

About Tempe Leadership
Tempe Leadership, a private nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, is a program of the Tempe Chamber of Commerce. For more than 30 years, Tempe Leadership has played a key role in bringing active, engaged community members together to effect positive and lasting change in the Tempe community. Its focus is to bring together individuals to engage and challenge one another, develop skills and talents, and grow into leadership roles. Learn more at www.tempeleadership.org.

Tempe Chamber of Commerce Honors The Dhaba and Caliente Construction with Business Excellence Awards

Posted on | June 16, 2016 | No Comments

The Tempe Chamber of Commerce presented two companies with Business Excellence Awards, the organization’s top honor for commerce.

The Dhaba was named the Small Business of the Year. Caliente Construction was named the Large Business of the Year.

The companies have a proven record of success and growth, community involvement, dedication to employees, leadership, reliability and commitment to customer service.

The Dhaba is an award-winning, contemporary Indian restaurant specializing in the cuisine of the Punjab region of northern India. It offers

Raveen Arora of The Dhaba Receives the Business Excellence Award

Raveen Arora of The Dhaba Receives the Business Excellence Award

homemade breads; a healthy selection of locally-sourced, organic meat and vegetarian dishes; and traditional desserts and drinks. It is the heart of India Plaza on Apache Boulevard. In the 13 years since its founding, it has become a comprehensive destination for Indian food and culture.

Owner Raveen Arora began life as a refugee in impoverished Calcutta, India. After gaining an education and business skills, he built the highly respected restaurant which has served more than 1 million people. This year, Arora was selected by the National Restaurant Association as the Face of Diversity in Arizona for his leadership in promoting diversity and inclusion in the community.


Caliente Construction is a family-owned general contractor providing new construction and renovation services. It was founded in 1991 by high school sweethearts Tom and Lorraine Bergman. In 2014 it relocated its headquarters and 80 employees to Tempe. The firm sources all of its outside services and partnerships from local companies headquartered in Arizona. It’s a 5-time winner of the state’s “Best of the Best” award for a perfect safety record. Additionally, it practices sustainable construction and its projects include a material recycling program.

Caliente Construction Receives the Business Excellence Award

Caliente Construction Receives the Business Excellence Award

It is a top five fund raiser for The American Cancer Society’s annual “Climb for the Cure” and supports the Phoenix Children’s Museum Sandfest, Madison Street Veterans Association and Tempe Cares. The award-winning company was recently recognized as Arizona’s 28th largest contractor and the 5th largest woman-owned business in the state. Ranking Arizona also named it #1 in Tenant Improvement, and the #2 Overall Contractor.

“The Dhaba and Caliente Construction are outstanding examples of the type of business that makes our city thrive,” said Mary Ann Miller, President/CEO of the Tempe Chamber. “Their passionate dedication to their customers, staff and the community are unparalleled. We are proud they’re part of the Tempe Chamber, and we celebrate their continued success.”

The awards were presented on June 16 at the Tempe Chamber’s Annual Luncheon at the Tempe Mission Palms Hotel.

The other finalists for the Business Excellence Awards were: ARCpoint Labs, Bullock Training and Development, Edward Jones and the Tempe Mission Palms hotel.

Farewell Letter from Mary Ann Miller

Posted on | June 9, 2016 | No Comments

Mary Ann Miller

Mary Ann Miller

It is with both excitement and sadness that I announce that I will be leaving the Tempe Chamber of Commerce.  My last day as President/CEO will be August 31.

In August the Tempe Chamber will be moving into a new location, new offices with literally a new point of view.  As we end our time at this location, it seemed a fitting opportunity for me to guide us to our new home, and then set the Chamber off on its own.

At our recent Women in Business Conference, both Catherine Anaya and Lin Sue Cooney spoke about being in jobs they loved for more than 20 years, and then knowing it was time to make a change, to find a new purpose in their lives.  I think of it as a time to pivot, to stop and look for the next path.

Over the years I’ve worked with three mayors, dozens of board members and hundreds of volunteers.  I’ve helped staff members leave and grow into their own leadership positions.  I’ve seen family businesses embraced by the next generation.  And through it all I have done everything I could to help your business thrive in Tempe through tireless advocacy efforts and fighting for a pro-business environment.

My more than 21 years at the Chamber have been a wonderful experience with a whirlwind of memories.  I wish you and your business much success and I want to thank you for your support all these years.  While I will miss my day-to-day connections with our membership, I am very excited to start the next chapter.

Best regards,

Mary Ann Miller


President/CEO Mary Ann Miller to Leave Tempe Chamber

Posted on | June 6, 2016 | No Comments

June w-motto6, 2016 – The Tempe Chamber of Commerce announced today that Chamber President/CEO Mary Ann Miller will be leaving after more than 21 years at the Tempe Chamber.  She will leave her position effective August 31, 2016.

Brian Wood, Waste Management and Chair-Elect of the Chamber will head the search committee. “During her tenure Mary Ann has guided the Chamber through diverse economies; from helping small businesses during the recession to assisting significant growth of key industries within our community.  She has tirelessly advocated on behalf of our members and entire business community at City Hall, the State Legislature and in Washington.”

Mary Ann Miller

Mary Ann Miller

Miller joined the Tempe Chamber in 1995 as Public Affairs Director.  In 1999 she moved into her current role as President/CEO. “In August the Tempe Chamber will be moving into a new location, new offices with literally a new point of view,” Miller said. “As we end our time at this location, it seemed a fitting opportunity for me to guide us to our new home, and then set the Chamber off on its own.”

During her time at the Tempe Chamber Miller received an MBA from Arizona State University and a Certificate in Organization Management from the U.S. Chamber’s Institute for Organization Management.

Miller developed the first-ever statewide legislative agenda for local chambers, and spoke on policy development at state, regional and national conferences.  She served on the Board of Arizona Chamber Executives, and was named Local Chamber Executive of the Year in 2008 by the Arizona Chamber.  She received the Howard Pyle Vocational Service Award from Tempe South Rotary in 2011.

Wood added, “Mary Ann will be missed tremendously and we are saddened to say good-bye.  Before she goes, though, we want to genuinely thank her for her dedication and loyalty to the Chamber and our community.  I want to also personally express my appreciation for her influence on me – her authentic leadership has been inspirational.  Although Mary Ann will never know the number of people she has positively affected, her ‘ripple effect’ is nothing less than exceptional.   We wish her all the best as she begins this exciting new chapter of her life.”

Read Miller’s personal letter regarding her announcement in the June 6 edition of The Business Advocate.

For questions or interview requests contact Mary Ann Miller at 480-736-4280.
For a headshot or support materials contact Sean Donovan at sean@tempechamber.org   

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