The Jamaican Chamber of Commerce of Atlanta, Inc., “JAMCHAM,” held its official launch on June 27th, 2015 at the Marriot Century Center in Atlanta, Georgia.
JAMCHAM was founded in May 2014, as a result of an initiative by the Atlanta Jamaican Association, Inc., to provide support for the financial endeavors of the Jamaican community.
The chamber started with 22 founding members made up of community leaders, business owners, business professionals, and members of the AJA, and with support of Jamaica’s Consul General to Miami.
Guest Speakers at the launch included, Cassius Butts, the Regional Administrator for the US Small Business Administration (SBA); Albert Edwards, Chair of the Dekalb County Chamber of Commerce and Ania Lackey, Director of Global Partnerships Atlanta Metro Chamber of Commerce.
Jamaica’s Honorary Consul to Atlanta, Jewel Scott, brought a message from the Consulate.
Dr. David Panton, chairman of the Board of JAMCHAM; Dr. Glen Laman, President; Sylvia McClure, Executive Vice President; Jason Halliburton, VP of Government Relations and Alan Stewart, President of the AJA also addressed the audience. Christopher Stewart, VP of Membership was the evening’s Master of Ceremonies.
Over the course of the past year, the chamber has conducted seminars and provided networking opportunities. Seminars were conducted on financial empowerment, financial planning and Credit Score management. In October 2014, the chamber hosted a luncheon for the visiting officials from the Ministry of foreign affairs. And earlier this year participated in the Jamaica Promotions corporations, JAMPRO, Atlanta Roadshow.
The chamber is governed by a 20-member Board of Directors chaired by Dr. David Panton, Private Equity Investor and Adjunct Professor at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School; President Dr. Glen Laman, entrepreneur and author of Jamaican Entrepreneurship, and Executive Vice President Sylvia McClure who heads her own Financial Services Company: Secretary Nicole Birch, Attorney at Law and Treasurer Barry Bennett, Owner and President of Metals and Materials Engineers, LLC .
The Chamber also boasts members such as Jamaica’s Consul General to Miami, Hon. Franz Hall who is an honorary member; Jamaica’s Honorary Consul to Atlanta, Hon. Jewel Scott; President of the Atlanta Jamaican Association, Alan Stewart; former Civil Servant and adviser to the Prime Minister of Jamaica, Percival Griffiths and Dr. Basil Kong retired CEO of the Association of Black Cardiologists.
The chamber is registered in the state of Georgia as a 501(C)(6) nonprofit corporation.