Even though no one has informed our recent daily temps, which have still been in the 90s, September universally signals a change in seasons. Our minds turn to back-to-school, pumpkin spice (for better or worse), fall foliage, and especially in Texas: FOOTBALL. Friday night lights, fantasy football and Mean Green. No matter your team — you know the stats and standings.

September also happens to round out my own first six months with your Chamber of Commerce, which inspired us to compile a list of organizational stats and standings, which will hopefully give you a clear picture of the plays our team have been making this year alone.

The Denton Chamber of Commerce as a whole, consists of the chamber proper, Discover Denton (our CVB) and the Office of Economic Development.

Check out these numbers, first from the Chamber office of Economic Development (led by Adam Gawarecki):

  • $95: Combined tax value, formerly, annually, on the properties now owned by WinCo Foods, United States Cold Storage and Tyson Foods.
  • $565,000-plus: Combined tax value, currently, annually, on the properties now owned by WinCo Foods and US Cold Storage. Tyson Foods tax value will be reassessed after it is developed.
  • 1.2 million: Square feet of industrial speculative space that will be developed as a result of a closed deal with Ironwood Realty.
  • One: the number of North Texans named to Consultant Connect’s 2019 Top 50 Economic Developers in North America, our own Adam Gawarecki.

It is important to note that the chamber works closely with the city of Denton in the Economic Development Partnership. Successful deals are always the result of successful partnerships.

Our office of tourism, or Discover Denton, has also put up some impressive numbers this year:

  • 51,000: Visitors to the Discover Denton Welcome Center this year
  • 560,000-plus: Video views on DentonRadio.com
  • 1 million-plus: engagements on Discover Denton’s social media
  • $179 million: Tourism dollars spent in Denton this year
  • $6.5 million: Dollars in definite bookings for meetings, conferences in 2019
  • $365: the amount each property owner saves in taxes annually as a result of tourism promotion by Discover Denton

That’s not all. For more information on the economic impact of tourism in Denton, and to say hello to our new Discover Denton VP, Mike Pistana, please contact our office.

While I have you here, indulge me while I share a few more numbers put up by your Denton chamber office (proper) in just the past six months:

  • 2,579: Attendees at the dhamber’s 51 events
  • 35: Participants in Leadership Denton’s 35th class (the largest Leadership Denton class to date)
  • 435: Attendees at the chamber’s nine Women in Commerce (WINC) events
  • $10,000: Dollars awarded in new Denton ISD teacher grants (the most we’ve ever been able to give)
  • 18: Grand opening/groundbreaking ribbon-cuttings by the chamber’s 35 Ambassadors
  • 5: New educational programs introduced as a resource to small business owners
  • 168: Days I have been on the job, getting to know and love the Denton business community

These numbers will make the most sense to you if you already have a clear understanding of what chambers exist to accomplish in their communities.

Chamber missions vary, but they all tend to focus to some degree on these five primary goals:

  1. Building communities that attract residents, visitors and investors (through public and private partnerships — the Economic Development arm of the chamber plays a large role here).
  2. Promoting those communities (this is most commonly the function of the Convention & Visitors Bureau arm of the chamber).
  3. Striving to ensure future prosperity via a pro-business climate (we want to make it easy to do business in our community).
  4. Representing the unified voice of the employer community to local, state and federal government (there’s power in numbers).
  5. Providing accelerated access to resources and relationships (networking!).

Your Denton chamber strives to advocate, educate and collaborate for economic growth in Denton. We have made a commitment to measure everything we do by this mission and we expect to be held accountable to it.

As always, I welcome your questions and thank you for the role each one of you plays in making Denton the best place to do business in North Texas.

ERICA PANGBURN is president of the Denton Chamber of Commerce and can be reached at 940-382-9693 and erica@


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