Wednesday, March 9, 2016

YCC Membership Drive 2016

Posted by: Andrew Duffy on Wednesday, March 9, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (1)

The Lawton Fort Sill Chamber is hosting a Membership Event that is like none other done before. For two-and-a-half days (May 24-25-26), community leaders will work against the clock and against each other to sign up new Chamber members and create greater community awareness of the important role of the Chamber. The event is organized by Jimmy Cusano and a group called Your Chamber Connection. Their specialty is high-energy membership campaigns that allow volunteers to conduct “out of the box” fun while building the membership base. Currently, our Chamber is in the early planning stages of the event. Right now we are working hard to recruit outstanding community business leaders to serve as our Event Chairmen! Stay tuned for up and coming information through our Facebook, and also through our Monday Minute newsletter. If you'd like to learn more, please email me at

Time Management

Posted by: Shay Beard on Wednesday, March 9, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

We all know how busy things get around the office and how quickly work can accumulate. Organization should be your first priority. The more organized you are the faster you will be able to accomplish a task. These are a few things that have worked for me here at the Chamber of Commerce.

I like to keep two calendars. One calendar should be of everything that needs to be done. Then I go through that and prioritize it by making deadlines for every task that needs to be done. This is what I like to put on my second calendar. That way each day I come to work I know what my goal is and can get working right away to accomplish it. If you are relying on someone else to get part of a task done be sure to give friendly reminders, this can help both of you in the long run. Try and have a filing system in place to help create less clutter. Not only can clutter be an eyesore but it can also be taking up valuable time when you have to go through it to find something. Don’t leave a task 99% done; take the few extra steps to finish it. Lastly we all need a little down time to destress so take a mini break to recharge and refocus.   

Hopefully these tips can help you out too!


Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Discovery Trail

Posted by: Shannon Yarbrough on Tuesday, March 8, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (1)

Have you been on your path to discovery on the Lawton Fort Sill Discovery Trail? The Discovery Trail is based on the top 7 attractions to Lawton Fort Sill. Along the path you will find:

  1. The Historic Mattie Beal Home
  2. Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge
  3. Museum of the Great Plains
  4. Leslie Powell Gallery
  5. Holy City of the Wichitas
  6. Fort Sill National Historic Landmark and Museum
  7. The Comanche National Museum and Cultural Center.

Check out for more details.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Southwest OK Legislative Reception

Posted by: Jamie Southerland on Friday, March 4, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

Building positive relationships with Oklahoma lawmakers is the primary focus for our annual Southwest Oklahoma Legislative Reception. Last Tuesday we celebrated another successful partnership with chambers from Altus, Chickasha, Duncan, Elgin, Frederick and Walters. Why is this reception important to membership?

  • Working together allows us to showcase the economic importance of southwest Oklahoma
  • Provides membership the opportunity to meet face-to-face with their legislators and many state agency leaders in a relaxed atmosphere
  • Location at the Oklahoma History Center allows for ease of attendance by the legislators
  • Chamber plays a large role in promoting a pro-business and pro-military environment

Thank you to the following sponsors who always show their support and made this event possible!

Fort Sill Federal Credit Union

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company


State Chamber of Oklahoma

Cameron University


Hilliary Communications

Great Plains Technology Center

Southwestern Medical Center

Comanche County Memorial Hospital

View photos from the event here.

5 Reasons YOU Should Join Co-Op

Posted by: Taylor Hutton on Friday, March 4, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

The Lawton Fort Sill Co-Op promotes unity between business and military leaders, and understanding between the business community of Lawton and the Soldiers of Fort Sill. If you aren’t yet a part of this phenomenal program, here a a few reasons you should be: 


  1. Co-Op creates a direct tie between your business and Fort Sill. The program allows for soldiers to attend your event, and all you have to do is filll out a form and submit it to MWR. The bonds you form through Co-Op are invaluable.
  2. Through Co-Op you are able to participate in various events throughout the year such as the Dinges Awards Banquet, The Buffalo Burger Cookout, The Bill Smith Memorial Golf Tournament and many more.
  3. Co-Op opens the door for many volunteer opportunities. Businesses and soldiers can work together to better the Lawton Fort Sill community.
  4. You will be ahead of the power curve, as you find out information before everyone else. Get a first look at advertising opportunities, and have the ability to plan ahead, because you will hear about events before anyone else.
  5. Be a part of an outstanding legacy. Co-Op began in 1980. It was pioneered by Major General Edward A. Dinges, the Commanding General of Fort Sill,  and former Lawton Mayor, Wayne Gilley. This laid the groundwork for what we have today. They dreamed of a mutual cooperation and understanding between military personnel and civilians, and we are still fostering those relationships today. 

The Lawton Fort Sill Co-Op is about people working together for the betterment of the community and building friendships that last a lifetime. Contact Jamie Southerland to join Co-Op today!

2016 Legislative Luncheon

Posted by: Communications Manager on Friday, March 4, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

The Lawton Fort Sill Chamber of Commerce hosted the Legislative Kick-Off Luncheon. As the state legislative session begins, this was an opportunity to meet with state legislators and engage with them.

“The Legislative Kick-Off Luncheon allows our community to build relationship with our local legislators,” said Albert Johnson, Jr., Vice Chair for Military and Government Affairs. “This is a chance for our community to get their voices heard by our local officials.

We would like to thank the legislators who attended the event: Representative John H. Montgomery, Representative Ann Coody, Senator Don Barrington, Representative Scooter Parks, and Representative Jeff Coody

We would also like to thank our sponsors 

City National Bank
Fort Sill Federal Credit Union
Cameron Univesity
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co

Photos from the event here.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

8 Laws of Leadership

Posted by: Debra Welch on Wednesday, March 2, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

Leadership is defined by many characteristics and actions. Similarly, the path to leadership varies with each individual although common traits can be found among the best leaders. Retired Air Force General William Cohen identified the following 8 Laws of Leadership in his book, “The Stuff of Heroes.” As you read them, consider those leaders you most admire and determine if they employ these same actions.

  1. Maintain absolute integrity
  2. Know your stuff
  3. Declare your expectations
  4. Show uncommon commitment
  5. Expect positive results
  6. Take care of y our people
  7. Put duty before self
  8. Get out in front
Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Tourism Tuesday

Posted by: Jacob Russell on Tuesday, March 1, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

I may be biased, but Lawton Fort Sill is unlike any other community in the United States. With more than 100,000 people, it has a number of big city amenities while never losing its small town touch. Visitors to Lawton Fort Sill can expect to be greeted with a warm smile as they discover the rich history of our community at the Museum of the Great Plains, follow herds of buffalo and longhorn in the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge, or experience the breathtaking view of Lawton Fort Sill from the top of Mount Scott.

When you are done taking in the scenic beauty of the refuge, venture into town and witness the sacrifice and heritage of the Comanche’s at the Comanche National Museum and Cultural Center, or learn about the military legacy of Fort Sill through its Air Defense Museum and Field Artillery Museum. With so much to do in one community, we are ready to help you make your next memory. So give us a call, 1-800-872-4540, and see yourself in Lawton Fort Sill!

Friday, February 26, 2016

Co-Op Coordinating Council

Posted by: Jamie Southerland on Friday, February 26, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

On Wednesday the Co-Op Coordinating Council met to begin planning the events for the coming year. With eleven events on their calendar they look forward to a busy year of community service and new friendships! The Lawton Fort Sill Co-Op works to promote unity between Lawton businesses and Fort Sill Soldiers. Co-Op builds lasting relationship through partnership. Business leaders look forward to developing relationships with Fort Sill Soldiers, Marines and their families in the coming year. If you aren’t a Co-Op member yet, it is never too late to join. For more information contact Jamie Southerland today. Photos here.

Sheppard Travel & Recreation Expo

Posted by: Jacob Russell on Friday, February 26, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

Jacob Russell, CVB Director, Christi Chambers, Apache Casino Hotel, and Michael Conley, Sleep Inn & Suites, showcased Southwest Oklahoma at the Sheppard Travel & Recreation Expo Monday afternoon in Wichita Falls. The group met with airmen and their families stationed at Sheppard Air Force Base regarding potential vacation opportunities in Lawton Fort Sill.

Arts for All

Posted by: Taylor Hutton on Friday, February 26, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

The Arts for All Luncheon and Cultural Awards were held on Feb. 26. Guest speaker, Barbara Boguski, entrepreneur, artist and Lawton businesswoman gave an inspired speech to attendees. At the luncheon the Lawton Arts and Humanities Council presented five awards to citizens and businesses who have made outstanding contributions to the arts and humanities in the community.

Luncheon Sponsored by:


Monday, February 22, 2016

Top 10 Reasons You Should be a Chamber Member

Posted by: Andrew Duffy on Monday, February 22, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)


  1. Network with Lawton Fort Sill’s Leaders

When you join our Chamber, you are joining the inner circle of roughly 1,000 business leaders from every sector of the Lawton Fort Sill economy. Through Business After Hours, Chamber Luncheons, New Member Receptions, Committee Meetings, and many other social gatherings, you have multiple opportunities to meet-n-greet with your next customer!

  1. Promote Your Business

Whether becoming the “Featured Member” on our Monday Minute newsletter, conducting a Ribbon Cutting event, or receiving a listing in our printed and online Business & Visitors Guide, there are many free publicity perks to your Chamber membership. In addition, the Chamber also offers members with exclusive sponsorship & advertising opportunities for our events and publications.

  1. Take Advantage of Our Resources

The Chamber is considered the “Resource Center” for the Lawton-Fort Sill Community. Whether it’s receiving real-time community news, utilizing our members to build clientele, or uploading your business news/events to our community calendar, the assets we have at the Chamber are here for you to use! Because the Chamber holds the mission of being the “Resource Center”, as a member, you have the opportunity to be included in our “Relocation Packets” that are distributed weekly to newly relocated families moving to Lawton Fort Sill.

  1. Find Your Next Great Hire

The Chamber’s website serves as a job posting board for our members! Check out under “Employment Opportunities” to post your vacancy today! The Chamber staff also shares our member’s job vacancies on our Facebook page to reach the widest dissemination. We are here to help you build your staff!

  1. A Voice For Your Business

Are you facing any legislative challenges at your business today? One of the Chamber’s focal missions is to advocate on behalf of the business community in Lawton Fort Sill, and to be the voice for our business leaders. Whether you are faced with local, state, or even federally mandated regulations, the Chamber is here to be your voice! Keep us informed so we can take the steps necessary to create pro-business legislation!

  1. Referred business from the Chamber

Between local residents and also visitors to our community, the Chamber receives multiple communicative opportunities to refer out our local businesses. Whether it’s a phone call, a walk-in customer, or an online web-link, we make it our priority to refer business to our members only! At the end of the year, we send you data as to how many times your business has been referred.

  1. Leadership & Professional Development Opportunities

Are you a business professional seeking leadership development opportunities within our community? Whether you’re interested to serve on Chamber committees, or even just attend local business seminars that provide education, Chamber members have first opportunity to take advantage of these opportunities. There’s no better way to receive personal & professional growth opportunities than to serve at the Chamber! For a list of active Chamber committees, visit

  1. Business Credibility in the Community

When a business joins the Chamber, there is a sense of credibility provided to them amongst the community. A Chamber business is one that is invested in the community, and has the economic growth of our community at top of interest. Once you join, our first step is to provide you with a Membership Window Cling so you can proudly display your affiliation on your front doors. Research shows 60% of customers are more likely to business with members of their local Chamber of Commerce.

  1. Member-to-Member Benefits

As a member of the Lawton Fort Sill Chamber of Commerce, not only would you receive many benefits from the Chamber, but there are also many perks from other members. Joining the Chamber is about creating partnerships and connecting businesses with other businesses, this is one way we will connect you!   Our Member-to-Member benefits are listed at

  1. Credibility with our Military Community

The Lawton Fort Sill Chamber is unique in that we not only build relations with our business leaders, but we also strive daily to build relations with our military leaders on Fort Sill. As a Chamber member, allow us to represent you at Fort Sill! Each week Chamber staff visits the Family Days ceremonies to welcome our visiting military families to our community. Many of the choices they make for touring, dining, or shopping could include your establishment!

Friday, February 19, 2016

Growing our Economy

Posted by: Debra Welch on Friday, February 19, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)

Written by Debra Welch | President and CEO

Growing our local economy is done through a multi-faceted set of strategies.  Our economic development team is comprised of several Chamber member representatives who recently worked together to upgrade their system of recording retention visit information on a secure platform designed to maintain confidentiality.   Tracking information about local businesses is an integral strategy of our overall economic development plan as it relates to business retention and expansion.   The new system adds organization, record keeping and report building systems to allow the entire team various levels of access to collect, input and analyze data.

Being able to stay connected with existing business entities and their plans, helps our economic development team assist these employers with workforce, training, promotion and available incentives for expansion opportunities.  Growing our economy by retaining and expanding existing businesses is a key strategy of a strong economic development plan for Lawton Fort Sill.

Commerce Circle