Amherst Chamber of CommerceAmherst Chamber of Commerce

Free Two Year Membership to The Amherst Chamber of Commerce for Veteran-Owned Businesses in WNY



In recognition of the leadership and dedication exhibited by the brave men and women that have served in our military, the Amherst Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announced a special, two year, complimentary membership to all veteran owned businesses that have been started in the past twelve months in the Western New York region. Erie County Clerk Chris Jacobs and Iraq War Vet and President of WNYHeroes Chris Kreiger joined Amherst Chamber of Commerce President Colleen C. DiPirro for the announcement at the Chamber's office in Williamsville.


The new initiative will provide veterans additional tools to develop and maintain their business in the Western New York community. The free membership will offer all the benefits of a full Amherst Chamber of Commerce membership, including admission to monthly Business after Hours events, participation on the Chamber's councils and committees, access to public officials at public affairs briefings and special events, participation in the Chamber's young professionals program Emerging Business Leaders and access to group health insurance rates.


Recognizing the service that veterans have provided to us, Amherst Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Colleen DiPirro developed this initiative to give back to those who have already given so much. "More and more veterans are returning to our community after serving, establishing their own businesses and continuing to give back in yet another meaningful way," stated DiPirro. "The Amherst Chamber of Commerce is proud to offer the veteran members of our community the additional tools and resources they need to establish a strong foundation for a sustainable and prosperous business. We look forward to serving a population of business owners who have served our country honorably."



Erie County Clerk Chris Jacobs has been an active supporter of veterans through his "Thank A Vet" discount program at businesses all across the County. The Amherst Chamber was one of the first organizations to support the Thank a Vet program, and numerous Chamber Members have already signed up to provide discounted products or services to Erie County's veterans.


"The Clerk's Office 'Thank-A-Vet' Discount Card Program is a win-win for the community that honors our veterans while driving commerce to local businesses," said Erie County Clerk Chris Jacobs. "The Amherst Chamber was one of the first to assist us in reaching out to their members, encouraging them to become a participating business in our 'Thank-A-Vet' program, and we are proud to continue our partnership. This complimentary membership initiative sponsored by the Amherst Chamber will provide new veteran-owned businesses the critical tools, support and opportunity needed to grow their business and help drive our local economy," added Clerk Jacobs. "Being an Amherst Chamber Member is a significant benefit to the service men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country".


Christopher Kreiger, Iraq war veteran and President and Co-founder of WNYHeroes, Inc., has a great appreciation for the veteran owned business initiative, having supported the local veterans of Western New York for the past six years through his work with WNYHeroes. "On behalf of WNYHeroes, Inc., our volunteers and supporters throughout the community, it brings us much pleasure to get behind the Amherst Chamber on this effort to further support our veterans. Having this program can and should create further awareness of just how many veterans we currently have supporting our communities today," Christopher Kreiger commented. "These veterans have gone from supporting our country to contributing to the region as small business owners," noted Kreiger.


Veterans planning to start a business in the Buffalo-Niagara region, or who have started a business within the past twelve months, should contact Kim Whelan, Director of Member Relations at the Amherst Chamber of Commerce at 716-632-6905 for more information on the two year complimentary membership and the benefits of Chamber membership.


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