Berkeley Chamber of Commerce News

Our Region Our Plan Final Report Released

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on March 11, 2013 in Government Affairs
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The Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments’ Board of Directors and the Regional Planning Committee are pleased to announce completion of OurRegion OurPlan. This multi-year initiative, involving countless hours of collaboration between the BCDCOG and various jurisdictions, agencies, organizations and citizens groups, culminates in a blueprint for the Lowcountry’s future. read more »

Emerging Leaders Network, February 19, 2013

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on February 15, 2013 in Event Highlights
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eln-2013The Emerging Leaders Network is a special program for up and coming business leaders in their 20′s and 30′s. This exclusive group, meets every other month for lunch. During this time, guest speakers will present various topics of interest. Leaders from this region will also be invited to dine and mingle with the group. These Young Emerging Leaders will also be given a number of opportunities throughout the year to take on various leadership roles within the Chamber and positively represent your company at events and programs.

Topic: Social Responsibility/Social Entrepreneurship

Tuesday, February 19th
12:00 noon – 1:00 p.m.
207 West 5th Street
Summerville, SC

Featuring Special Guest Speaker:
Laquita C. Blockson, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Management at Saint Leo University

Laquita C. Blockson, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Management at Saint Leo University’s North Charleston (S.C.) Center. Laquita earned the Doctor of Philosophy degree in Strategy, Environment, and Organizations from the University of Pittsburgh’s Katz Graduate School of Business, and both her baccalaureate and master degrees in Business Administration from Florida A&M University’s School of Business & Industry. Before coming to Saint Leo, Laquita served on the faculties of Florida International University, the University of Northern Iowa, and the College of Charleston. Before pursuing the doctorate, Laquita worked for Taco Bell Corporation, AT&T, and LG&E Energy Corporation.

Dr. Blockson is a business/organizational effectiveness expert and scholar who conducts research on minority-owned businesses, women in business/management, entrepreneurial ethics, and urban economic development. Her research has appeared in Business & Society, The Case Journal, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, and the Journal of the Center for Research on African American Women. Laquita also serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Ethics and Entrepreneurship and the Journal of Management, Spirituality and Religion. Dr. Blockson is a member of the Academy of Management, the Southern Management Association, the Organizational Behavior Teaching Society for Management Educators, and the Management Faculty of Color Association, among others. She is also a former member of the Board of Examiners for the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award program. Laquita is one of Diverse (Issues in Higher Education) magazine’s 2009 Emerging Scholars, a Simmons College’s Center for Gender in Organizations Scholar, and the recipient of the 2005 Academy of Management Best Mentoring Practices Award.

Member Spotlight: Miller-Motte Technical College

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on February 13, 2013 in Member Spotlight
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0000-019Miller-Motte Technical College offers fully accredited programs dedicated to the highest standards of instruction.


To better the lives of prospective graduates through career readiness and skills training, employer-tailored programs and partnerships, and industry-leading job placement.

  • Day, Evening and Online Classes are available
  • Associate Degree, Certificate and Diploma Programs
  • Hiring or Need an Intern? Please give us a call, our services are free!

Miller-Motte also has a full service Atrium Day Spa

Please call 843-266-1920 for your skin care, massage and hair care needs.

We are committed to Changing Futures, Changing Lives and it all starts with you!

Miller-Motte Technical College
8085 Rivers Avenue
North Charleston, SC  29406

Guide to Federal, State and Corporate Procurement

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on February 13, 2013 in Business Tips , Government Affairs
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BCIebookHere is a gift to you from the Berkeley Chamber of Commerce.  It is a complimentary and helpful guide to procurement opportunities for businesses. We encourage you to use it!

Free Guide to Federal, State and Corporate Procurement Opportunities (PDF)

Braddock’s Procurement Opportunities Guide, 2013 Edition, is designed to help small-business owners and decision-makers understand the procurement process used by governments and large corporations.

The Guide provides an overview of government and corporate markets with an emphasis on who buys and how buying decisions are made. The Guide also presents “next-step” resources that small business can use to penetrate these markets.

Topics include:

  • Selling to the Federal Government/State Governments
  • Selling to Large Corporations
  • Selling to Foreign Governments and International Organizations
  • “Green” Procurement
  • Special Resources for Women-, Minority-, or Veteran-Owned Businesses

A glossary of procurement-related terms is included, as well as a procurement preparation checklist, information about teaming agreements and joint ventures, and more.

Available at no charge to you
This special PDF edition of Braddock’s Procurement Opportunities Guide is available at no charge thanks to the generous support of Microsoft Corporation. Braddock’s Procurement Opportunities Guide is published and copyrighted by Braddock Communications, Inc.

First Citizens Holds Grand Opening Event to Celebrate New and Expanded Moncks Corner Office

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on February 12, 2013 in Member News
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MONCKS CORNER, S.C. – First Citizens celebrated the opening of its new Moncks Corner office at an evening event on Thursday, Jan. 24. Associates began serving customers on Monday, Dec. 17, 2012, from the company’s new building at 212 East Main Street, located at the same site at the former Moncks Corner branch. The branch features enhanced digital merchandising and a convenient image-enabled ATM.

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Goodwill and VITA Provide Free Tax Assistance

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on February 11, 2013 in Member News
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Charleston, SC – Goodwill Industries of Lower South Carolina has partnered with VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) to provide free tax help to low and moderate income people that need help preparing their tax returns.

The free tax assistance is available at Goodwill’s Community Service Center (2150 Eagle Drive, North Charleston) by appointment only to individuals with an income of $49,000 and below. Individuals who qualify can schedule an appointment by calling 843-566-0072. Individuals are asked to bring the following to their appointment:

read more »

Business Mixer Holiday Inn Express – Moncks Corner Pops Smokin’ BBQ & Catering

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on February 7, 2013 in Photo Galleries
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This is an event photo gallery.

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Berkeley Chamber Announces Winner of “Holiday Buy Local” Campaign

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on January 15, 2013 in Press Releases
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(Left to Right): Linda Kohl, 2012 Holiday Buy Local Campaign Winner; Elaine Morgan, Berkeley Chamber of Commerce CEO

Since its inception in January 2011 the Berkeley County Camber of Commerce’ “Buy Local” promotion has effectively raised awareness of the benefits of buying local. For the past two holiday seasons the Chamber has put its money where its mouth is. Berkeley County residents who spent $300 or more in local businesses could enter a Chamber sponsored drawing for $1,000. Berkeley Chamber’s “Holiday Buy Local” campaign winner for 2012 is Linda Kohl, a nine year resident of Goose Creek.

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Member Spotlight: Trash Gurl

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on January 14, 2013 in Member Spotlight
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Trash Gurl was formed in 2009 by Melissa Polutta and her husband Jeff Polutta.  The company operates out of Goose Creek, located in Berkeley county.  The Polutta’s business has had a steady controlled growth since day one.  They believe this is a result from a need of a sweeter approach in the waste industry.  They specialize in all areas of waste management and portalet rentals as well.  Trash Gurl has grown to be one of the top haulers in the area thanks to all their loyal customers.  Trash Gurl continues to extend her gratitude and participates in numerous local charitable organizations.  For more information on this company please feel free to contact them at (843) 552-1880, visit the office located at 1244 B Redbank Rd. Goose Creek, SC 29445, or browse their website

Local Store Marketing: Chamber of Commerce

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on January 14, 2013 in Business Start-up , Marketing , Membership , Networking
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Joining and becoming active in your local chamber of commerce is an excellent way to increase your store’s visibility within your local business area.  In addition to meeting a number of key local business contacts who can turn into group sales and individual patrons of your store, your chamber of commerce offers inexpensive advertising programsthat place your store front and center with the chamber’s membership.

Attending as many chamber events in your community as possible enables you to get to know the other businesses in the area and stay top-of-mind with key networkers.  The time commitment is negligible throughout the year, but the payback can be quick since most chamber members share the same trade area as you and are very well-connected throughout it.
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2012 Schapiro Study on Chamber Membership

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on December 12, 2012 in Member Benefits
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Chamber Membership is Effective Business Strategy

A national survey* of 2,000 adults reveals that being active in a local chamber of commerce is an effective business strategy because two-thirds of consumers believe that such companies use good business practices, are reputable, care about   their customers, and are involved in the community. If a company shows that it is highly involved in its local chamber (e.g., is a chamber board member), consumers are 10% more likely to think that its products stack up better against its competition.

Major Impact on Small Businesses

Small businesses represent the largest segment of most local chamber membership rolls, and the study indicates that chamber membership has consistent and powerful benefits for small business members. If respondents know that a small  business is a member of its local chamber, the business enjoys:

  • 49% increase in its consumer favorability rating
  • 73% increase in consumer awareness
  • 68% increase in its local reputation
  • an 80% increase in the likelihood that consumers will patronize the business in the future.

* The study was conducted by The Schapiro Group, an Atlanta-based strategic consulting firm. It was commissioned by the American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE), in cooperation with the Western Association of Chamber Executives. The study was sponsored by Insperity, a Houston-based company that provides human resources and other business services to more than 100,000 businesses nationwide.

 Vertical Market Impacts:

Restaurant Franchises

When consumers know that a national 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
  • 15% more likely to report knowing a lot about the franchise
  • 58% more likely to eat at the franchise more often
  • 37% more likely to think favorably of the franchise.

Among consumers who do not eat at the franchise so often, those who are aware that the franchise is a member of the chamber are 33% more likely to hold favorable opinions of the franchise. Among consumers who hold less favorable opinions of the restaurant franchise, those who are aware that the franchise is a member of the chamber are 65% more likely to eat there in the coming months.

Automobile Manufacturers

When consumers know that an auto manufacturer is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are:

  • 21% more likely to have a favorable opinion of that company
  • 31% more likely to consider purchasing their next car from that company

Among those who have ever considered buying a car from a particular auto manufacturer, chamber membership leads to a 44% increase in consumers’ likelihood of purchasing a car there in the future.

Insurance Companies

When consumers know that an insurance company is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are:

  • 29% more likely to report knowing a lot about the company
  • 36% more likely to think favorably of the company
  • 36% more likely to consider buying insurance from it.
  • Among consumers who hold less favorable opinions of the insurance company, those who are aware that the company is a member of the chamber are 25% more likely to consider purchasing insurance from it.

Among those who have not considered purchasing insurance there in the past, chamber membership increases that likelihood by 37%.


Traffic Count Publication 2012

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on December 11, 2012 in Government Affairs
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The 2001-2011 Traffic Count Publication for the Berkeley, Charleston, Dorchester region was recently released. The publication shows a 10-year history of traffic counts in our region.

Download/View Report

Edward Jones Holiday Open House 2012

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on December 11, 2012 in Event Highlights , Photo Galleries
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This is an event photo gallery. read more »

Member Spotlight: County South Cane Bay Realty

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on December 10, 2012 in Member Spotlight
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Opened in 2010, County South Cane Bay Realty of Summerville, SC is an independently owned and operated Commercial, Residential and Business Brokerage Office. We are the third franchise of County South Business Brokers firm home based near Charlotte, established in 1989. As with a full service Real Estate Company we have agents who specialize in many of todays most difficult transactions, including those associated with loss mitigation. With our Certified Distressed Property Experts and Foreclosure Intervention Specialists, we consistently stay alert to changes within the market, providing the utmost quality service to our clientele.

Regionally, we focus on the Carolinas as well as Georgia. County South employs as independent contractors, multilingual and talented brokers with combined 40 plus years experience with sales and service. The business websites at or  are very efficient, easy to use, and daily updated websites for our clients. We pride ourselves in customer service, satisfaction, repeat business, and referrals.

Perhaps you or someone you know is facing “Foreclosure” or you would like to know more about buying a distressed property…our brokerage firm at Cane Bay Realty has an active NAID number to help you place a bid online for individuals or investors alike. Please contact us direct or visit our loss mitigation website at for these types of transactions.

We help buyers and sellers alike; Residential or Commercial, including businesses with or without property to successfully fulfill their needs. For “business owners”, you can be assured of complete confidentiality when listing with us to ensure your business continues to thrive as usual without disclosing a sale. Any qualified buyers must first sign our non-disclosure form prior to releasing available information from any of our sellers. Your confidential information may only be available upon request from those “legitimate” buyers.

The choice is yours! Through our MLS access for the Tri-county area we can also help you locate residential rentals, vacant properties or listed commercial sales or leases. As members of the Berkeley County Chamber of Commerce and Tri-County Business Boosters we pledge the utmost professional services to your business or real estate needs. Thank you to all who have placed their confidences in our brokerage firm and to the many supporting roles given by our business partners.

Michael Polomski, Realtor®, North/South Carolina Broker, CDPE, FIS, LMC

and Broker in-Charge of County South Cane Bay Realty

Leadership Berkeley 2013

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on December 10, 2012 in Government Affairs , Human Resources , Networking
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Leadership Berkeley is a 10-month program that opens doors for business and community leaders who have the desire to understand all the major components of Greater Berkeley County; along with the aspiration to have the knowledge to help shape the future of our area. This program offers an opportunity to meet with local and state leaders while gaining knowledge of the issues and what makes Berkeley County continue to prosper.

How Will Leadership Berkeley Help Further My Career?

Leadership Berkeley provides a unique education, while helping you develop important connections. The lifelong relationships you establish with your Leadership Berkeley classmates with carry over to both your business and personal life.  Additionally, the opportunities to meet and discuss with the business/community leaders and elected officials gives you the insight to better understand and even help address critical issues affecting our region and state.

For more information, contact Simone Thornton at (843) 761-8238 or

State of the County 2/8/12

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on December 10, 2012 in Government Affairs
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Friday, February 8, 2012
Redbank Club
2316 Redbank Road
Goose Creek, SC

Berkeley County is one of the fastest growing areas in the state. Berkeley County saw it’s first true industry in 1954, and has since emerged to catch the eyes of multi-billion dollar national and international companies who have chosen to either move or expand their operations. As Berkeley County continues to attract international attention, they proudly acknowledge the accomplishment of achieving 1 billion dollars in capital investments during two separate years.

Berkeley County continues to prosper and grow with new industries and new developments. This presentation presented by Supervisor Dan Davis outlines county’s plans for the upcoming year, providing attendees valuable insight into of the future plans of Berkeley County and how those plans will impact both citizens and businesses.

Cost:  Members: $20.00

Non-Members: $35.00


761-8238 or 577-9549


Coordinating the 2013 Berkeley County Magazine

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on December 10, 2012 in Community Events , Marketing , Membership , Tourism
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We are in the process of coordinating our upcoming Berkeley County Magazine.  Since the first publication, the Chamber has received compliments on this high end magazine.  The deadline to submit articles and ads is 12/31/12.

This year we are looking for what makes Berkeley County unique along with innovating programs and projects.  We will also be including a few testimonials on why you located your business here in Berkeley County.

If you have suggestions, please write a description along with contact information.  If you have any questions, please contact us at the Chamber Office.

Urge your Employees to Protect against Identity Theft

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on November 16, 2012 in Government Affairs , Human Resources
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In October, the SC Department of Revenue learned that its records were breached in a criminal cyber attack.  As a result, anyone who has paid SC taxes since 1998 may have had his or her personal information compromised.

Please share the following information with your employees:

SC individual taxpayers should do the following by Jan. 31, 2013:

  • Visit (code SCDOR123) or call 1-866-578-5422 (M-F 9am-9pm EST; S-S 11am-8pm EST) to enroll for one year of identity theft protection.

SC business owners should do one of the following by Jan. 31, 2013:

All services are free of charge. For more information, please contact the SC Department of Consumer Affairs at 1-800-922-1594 or visit

New Members: November 2012

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on November 13, 2012 in Member News , Membership
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O’Brien & Gere Engineers, Inc.
Ms. Janette Alexander
2170 Ashley Phosphate Road, 5th Floor
North Charleston, SC 29405
Phone:  (843) 553-6670
Fax:  (843) 553-0755

Merrimack Heights
Ms. Rhonda Carter
319 Merrimack Boulevard
Moncks Corner, SC 29461
Phone:  (843) 899-4400

Sanders Brothers Construction Co., Inc.
Mr. Gregory Sanders
1990 Harley Street
North Charleston, SC 29406
Phone:  (843) 744-4261
Fax:  (843) 554-2095


Member Spotlight: D&R Gunsmithing and Sales

Posted by Berkeley Chamber of Commerce on November 13, 2012 in Member News , Member Spotlight
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D&R Gunsmithing and Sales in Goose Creek Does Its Business Inside Out!

Husband and wife team, Diana and Rich Rogers, opened D&R Gunsmithing and Sales to fill in missing service in our area, gunsmithing.  They offer gunsmithing services, sale of handguns, rifles both new and your consignments.  They further offer training classes in various fields.  Their main emphasis is on gunsmithing allowing them to be the one true gunsmith shop in the area.
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