The Newly Named Santa Clara Chamber of Commerce Hits Another Iceberg

By Robert Haugh

Last month, the Santa Clara Chamber of Commerce changed its name to the Silicon Valley Central Chamber of Commerce (CCC).  

We reported that it was done after a couple of years of making big mistakes and political blunders —  a lot of them.

So they really needed a new name and a new start. At least they thought so.

Former Chamber boardmember and lobbyist/publisher Miles Barber wrote a column about it last month in the Santa Clara Weekly. Here’s his take:

“(Outgoing President Jan Eric) Nordmo introduced incoming Board President Chris Boyd, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Kaiser Permanente, Santa Clara.

The crowd was thrilled when Boyd unveiled the new (his emphasis) Chamber logo and name. Effective July 1, the Santa Chamber of Commerce will become Silicon Valley Central Chamber of Commerce, incorporating a broader outreach and more encompassing of its widening scope.”

In the month since then, not many have been “thrilled.”

Here’s the headline from the July 4th San Jose Spotlight story:

“Silicon Valley chambers of commerce rebuff new rebranded group”

Ouch.

Here’s the headline from the July 5th Silicon Valley Business Journal story:

“Report: Rebranded Santa Clara Chamber of Commerce is already unpopular with its neighbors”

Double Ouch.

According to the reports, two key chambers have publicly rejected the SVCCC’s attempts to work in their cities. That’s Sunnyvale and Campbell.

We’ve heard from Santa Clara businesses and chamber members. They’re not “thrilled.” In fact, they’re not happy. They think the leadership has made another big mistake on top of all their past blunders.

There’s even talk of switching back to the old name. That would make a lot of sense. So it probably won’t happen.

8 comments

  1. The King is right. Notice how Miles Barber writes nice things about the 49ers, Kevin Moore, Dominic Caserta, Mike Sellers, …

    They all go down the tubes eventually.

  2. I agree with R.S. (I think I know who you are). The Chamber leadership is not doing a good job. Chris Boyd is not a smart leader obviously. Nick Kaspar is a nice guy. He’s friendlier and more responsive than Roy Truitt ever was. But he’s young and can’t be trusted to set the direction of the organization. We will need a complete change over before the Chamber (or whatever the hell we call ourselves) gets fixed.

    • I agree with friends of RS! Chris Boyd is not a smart leader. Why is the chamber dealing with someone who is not doing a good job at Kaiser Hospital Santa Clara? I know people who work there and they are not happy with him. Example: Some volunteers have a program called NODA No One Dies Alone They sit with people who are dying when their family or friends can’t be there, the volunteers are. A few years ago the Kaiser chaplain retired and Chris Boyd refused to hire another one. Without a chaplain the NODA program is almost at an end. He really doesn’t like volunteers, what does that tell you?

      • @ Cris Boyd is not a good leader, I agree with you,

        Boyd’s Kaiser failures include the elimination of the hospital Chaplain. The Chaplaincy plays an Important role, not only for patients and families but also for staff and people of all faiths as well as people with no faith.

        To say he’s not a smart leader is an under statement. Ask anyone at Kaiser about the job Boyd is doing as the Senior Vice President and General Manager of Kaiser Permanente. His poor decision making has resulted in reduction and elimination of key positions, services and has managed to drive volunteer moral to an all time low. Chris Boyd is the new Chamber Board President. I’m surprised the Chamber didn’t check Boyd’s references, what a mistake!!

  3. I am not comfortable with the direction of the Chamber. It should be focused on SANTA CLARA business interests. We have a lot of them. When I heard Chris Boyd speak and blame the City for most of our troubles I knew we were in trouble. I’m a business in Santa Clara. But I’m a taxpayer and resident, too. The City was protecting its interests. Boyd’s approach will just make things worse.

  4. A leopard can’t change its spots! Maybe the new group is seen as a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

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