150TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE GREATER SCRANTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE; Congressional Record Vol. 164, No. 102
(Senate - June 19, 2018)

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[Page S4033]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




     150TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE GREATER SCRANTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

  Mr. CASEY. Mr. President, I rise today to recognize the Greater 
Scranton Chamber of Commerce on their 150th anniversary. I am proud to 
highlight their many accomplishments and significant contributions to 
my hometown of Scranton and northeastern Pennsylvania.
  Eleven years after the city of Scranton was incorporated, 13 
visionary and ambitious men met in the upstairs of a grocery store and 
formed the Merchants Association to encourage the economic growth of 
the city. Scranton was an industrial center of mining and railroads, 
and the association's first order of business was to establish 
equitable freight rates. Later, the association was renamed the 
Scranton Board of Trade and in 1923 was officially chartered as the 
Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce.
  For a century and a half, the chamber has actively served the region, 
always with the mission of cultivating a healthy business ecosystem 
that could attract, preserve, and create jobs in the area. In fact, the 
chamber has always been a national leader and trendsetter within the 
business community. In 1945, as many Scrantonians were serving in World 
War II, the chamber spearheaded a community effort to save jobs at the 
Murray Bomber Wing Plant, which resulted in the launching of the 
Scranton Lackawanna Industrial Building Company. This innovative effort 
created what is considered the American standard model for economic 
development. Today, as the largest business network in northeastern 
Pennsylvania with more than 1,500 member companies representing a 
variety of employers, the chamber helps to foster economic development, 
provides small businesses access to affordable capital, facilitates 
leadership development programs, and leads workforce development 
initiatives.
  From Scranton's early days as a hub for American entrepreneurship and 
industry, the chamber has played a critical role and continues to be 
one of the region's strongest and most effective business and community 
advocates. It has worked in partnership with numerous stakeholders to 
address the challenges brought on by an ever-changing regional economy.
  Although the mining and freight-dependent industries that represented 
the growth of the greater Scranton region's early days represent a 
bygone era, today, new industries now call northeastern Pennsylvania 
home. These new fields of business have helped the area become a 
regional leader in education, medicine, and manufacturing. Today, the 
region builds upon its rich history of industrial ingenuity, economic 
prosperity, and most notably, new Americans and immigrants seeking 
opportunity. In light of the region's diverse heritage and progress 
towards true equality, the chamber hosted its inaugural NEPA Women's 
Leadership Conference in 2015. I am proud of the chamber's continued 
efforts as it strives to promote the region as an ideal location for 
businesses of all genders, ethnicities, races, socioeconomic groups, 
sizes, and fields. The greater Scranton area continues to be well 
positioned to attract and retain businesses, startups, and 
entrepreneurial ventures.
  It is a privilege to pay tribute to Greater Scranton Chamber of 
Commerce's historic legacy and the contributions its members have made 
to the city of Scranton and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania over the 
last 150 years. I wish the chamber continued success and prosperity as 
it celebrates this extraordinary sesquicentennial anniversary.
  Mr. TOOMEY. Mr. President, I rise today to recognize my constituents 
at the Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce on their 150th anniversary 
and highlight their contributions to making the greater Scranton region 
a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family.
  Established in 1867 as the Scranton Board of Trade, the Greater 
Scranton Chamber of Commerce is the largest business network in 
northeastern Pennsylvania, with more than 1,500 member companies 
representing a variety of employers. The chamber is also the parent 
organization to a number of affiliates that support economic 
development, provide small business lending services, facilitate 
leadership development programs, and guide workforce development 
initiatives. From Scranton's early days as a hub for American heavy 
industry, the chamber has actively served the region for more than 150 
years, always with the mission of attracting, sustaining and growing 
jobs in the area.
  Since its inception, the chamber has been recognized as one of the 
region's preeminent business and community advocates. It has worked in 
partnership with numerous stakeholders to address the challenges 
brought on by an ever-changing regional economy. For their part, as the 
region transformed over the last century, so too has the chamber. Since 
1923, the chamber has evolved and developed a number of affiliates 
whose missions are to address and respond to the changing regional 
dynamics through economic, industrial, workforce, and community 
development. These affiliates have worked to diversify the region's 
economy and utilize the tools and resources available to them to meet 
the needs of the community and its business members.
  Today, new industries now call northeast Pennsylvania home and have 
helped the area become a regional leader in fields such as education, 
medicine, and manufacturing. Most notably, what drives the region today 
is building upon the greater Scranton area's rich history of industrial 
and economic prosperity. These are key points the chamber and its 
partners have seized on to promote the region as an ideal location for 
businesses of all sizes and specialties. With a history of success and 
an abundance of talent and expertise, the greater Scranton area is well 
positioned to attract entrepreneurs and businesses alike.
  I wish to recognize the significant contributions that the Greater 
Scranton Chamber of Commerce and its members have made to the city of 
Scranton and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania over the last 150 years 
and wish them all the best as the chamber celebrates this 
sesquicentennial anniversary.

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