Chairwoman’s Welcome

Darlene Molkhe - Greater Bakersfield Chamber Chairwoman

As a long-time member of the Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce, I am excited to serve as the 2019 Chairwoman of the Board. The Chamber has been a driving force in the local economy since its founding in 1920, and as we head into our 99th year, the support of our members is more important than
ever. Our incredible members allow the Chamber to celebrate ribbon cuttings and anniversaries, plan enlightening class days for our Leadership and Youth Leadership Bakersfield programs, and review ballot initiatives and legislation amongst many other things.

Most importantly, we hope our members appreciate that even if they are not as actively engaged in the Chamber as they’d like to be, or have time for, the Chamber is always working for you. We will continue to champion initiatives and policies that support economic growth, highlight the great partnerships and
projects happening in our community and develop the next generation of business and community leadership. Here are just a few of the initiatives we will be working on:

  • A continuing priority will be assisting our small business members with labor law compliance and connecting them with procurement opportunities. The Chamber’s expanded Labor Law and HR Forum series keeps business owners and managers informed of new laws and requirements, and our Pancakes & Partnerships event will connect small businesses with supply chain leaders from large businesses and organizations.
  • Through a partnership between the City of Bakersfield, the County of Kern and many local companies, we will complete the work of the Regional Branding Initiative. The goal is to improve the external image of Bakersfield and Kern County. We believe this effort will be integral to driving economic growth and the recruitment of highly-skilled workers.
  • We are proud of our reputation as an unabashed advocate for the business community and for aggressively working to elect pro-business candidates. We were very active and successful in the past election year, and we will be active on numerous state, regional, and local issues while we prepare for the next election cycle.

As we enter 2019, the Chamber is committed to serving our membership. On behalf of the board of directors, I want to thank you for allowing us to be stewards of the Chamber, and we are here to work for you – our members.

Darlene Mohlke
Vice President, Sales & Marketing
Castle & Cooke California, Inc.

Strength in Numbers, Working for You

Being a member of the Greater Bakersfield Chamber connects you with more than 1,100 members. You’re part of an organization that represents 50-60,000 jobs in the Bakersfield area – considerable clout when advocating for issues that affect the Central Valley. Your business reaps daily benefit from membership with exposure to other businesses of all sizes. You also realize value from interacting with similar and different types of businesses. Members find that they get out of the Chamber what they take from it. And there’s a lot to take. Explore our site to learn about member benefits, events, activities and opportunities for involvement.

Working for Bakersfield since 1920, we’re a recipient of the California Chamber President’s Circle award for six years in a row – ever since the award began. Our mission is to provide leadership for a healthy business community. The Board of Directors and Staff work together to offer resources and opportunities for members and member companies. A member-driven and professionally staffed nonprofit association, the Greater Bakersfield Chamber has been serving the business community since 1920. The more than 1,000 businesses and organizations that belong to the GBC are making a smart investment in their community and the success of their own business. The Chamber works year-round to represent the interests of business with government, promote our community, create and support a strong local economy and provide networking opportunities for business. Dedicated to community collaboration, what better organization than the Chamber to work with government, education, private industry and many others to make our community a place that we can truly say is “Bakersfield: building Something Better.” Outside of Bakersfield the Chamber is equally respected for its efforts in supporting business. Recognized as one of the top Chambers in the State of California, the Greater Bakersfield Chamber was recently acknowledged as one of the top five Chambers looked up to by other Chambers in 14 western states.