Organization Broadens Scope to Allow for Early Endorsement of Well-Qualified Candidates, Incumbents
GILBERT – The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce has revised its longstanding endorsement policy to allow for endorsement of qualified, business-friendly candidates running for local office prior to the formal endorsement process, as approved by the organization’s Board of Directors.
In support of the Chamber’s mission of proactively serving as the business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert, it is the Chamber’s policy to endorse candidates for local office who are supportive of strengthening the business climate in Gilbert.
As the policy previously stated, prior to endorsing any candidate, the Chamber’s Public Policy Committee conducted an extensive evaluation of each candidate’s position on issues relevant to and actions taken in support of local business. The results of this evaluation were then presented to the organization’s Board of Directors, which reviewed the recommendation and then determined which, if any, of the candidates will receive the organization’s endorsement. While this formal process will remain in practice, the policy’s revisions allow for consideration of early endorsement of both new and incumbent local candidates.
New candidates seeking early endorsement must meet the following requirements:
- Demonstrate a proven understanding of business issues;
- Be active within the Gilbert Chamber for a minimum of three years;
- Be engaged in various civic, government, or other organizations; and
- Have worked with the Public Policy Committee for a minimum of three years.
Any candidate meeting the qualifications above may seek an early endorsement from the Chamber. Once this request is made on behalf of the candidate, the Public Policy Committee will evaluate the candidate’s credentials and may then recommend an endorsement to the Board of Directors. Should an endorsement be awarded, the Chamber will publicly endorse this candidate prior to the formal endorsement process for the other open seats.
Incumbents seeking early endorsement must meet the following requirements:
- Running for the same office for which they are currently elected;
- Have received an endorsement from the Chamber for the previous cycle he or she was elected;
- Maintained a high vote score or applicable ranking with the Chamber;
- Demonstrated history of active engagement with the Chamber; and
- Supported the Chamber on key issues.
According to the policy revisions, once an incumbent makes the request for early endorsement, members of the Public Policy Committee will vote anonymously whether or not to recommend endorsement. If more than one member of the Committee indicates reservations with the early endorsement, the incumbent candidate will instead be directed to participate in the formal endorsement process.
The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 800 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit gilbertaz.com.