Come hear from Governor Maura Healey as she addresses Chamber members as the 73rd Governor of the Commonwealth.
9:45am - 11:00am
The Westin Copley
Hear from a panel of professionals on how apprenticeship programs are creating a more robust and diverse talent pipeline.
3:00pm - 5:00pm
Another Age Productions
Join us for our highly anticipated Annual Meeting, Greater Boston's top business convening of the year.
4:30pm - 8:00pm
Boston Convention and Exhibition Center
Expand your DEI professional development with a virtual workshop focused specifically on LGBTQIA+ identities and inclusion.
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Our Women’s Leadership Program enables you to take your leadership to the next level by arming you with the most in-demand leadership toolkit.
Our Boston’s Future Leaders (BFL) program provides emerging leaders with a socially conscious and civically engaged leadership toolkit, as well as the opportunity to apply their knowledge through experiential assignments.
City Awake empowers young professionals in a variety of ways that encourages these rising leaders to stay invested in the region’s future success.
We are developing an ecosystem of corporations and partners with the influence and buying power to transform economic inclusion for minority business enterprises (MBEs).
The Fierce Urgency of Now Festival brings Boston’s diverse young professionals together with business leaders, organizations and their peers to build connection, advance careers and ignite positive change.
BIMA (the Boston Interactive Media Association) serves a vibrant community of like-minded professionals from agencies, brands, publishers, and ad-tech companies with business interests in the New England market.
For nearly 30 years, the Chamber’s Women’s Network has connected female professionals of all background and career levels. Today, our Women’s Network is the largest in New England, strengthening the professional networks of women each year.
The Massachusetts Apprentice Network convenes employers, training providers, and talent sources interested in developing and implementing apprenticeship programs in occupations across industries and statewide in fields such as tech, advanced manufacturing, healthcare, financial services, and more.
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Explore our mission and values to better understand how we are leading the business community forward.
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The Chamber’s latest Government Affairs Forum featured a special panel discussion – “Fixing & Financing our Broken Public Transit Systems: Lessons from Across the Country” – with some of the top leadership of major transit systems including Craig Stewart of New York City’s MTA, Joe Casey the recently retired general manager of Philadelphia’s SEPTA system, Mortimer Downey the chair of the board of Washington D.C.’s Metro system, and Joe Aiello of the MBTA’s Finance and Management Control Board.
This highly experienced panel shared their insights on the factors that can make or break a transit system such as funding, long-range financial planning, quality of management, talent recruitment and retention, public trust, and positive pressure from the business community. The key takeaways:
1). A well-functioning transit system is a priority for regional economic growth and competing on the global stage. When asked about how a transit system like the MBTA can fall into crisis, the panel pointed things like chronic lack of investment, poor management, and a culture not conducive to implementing preventative measures as contributing factors.
2). Attracting, retaining, and training talent to build a strong management team is vital to moving a system out of crisis and giving it a sustainable future. Joe Aiello pointed to the fact that some of the cost overrun issues plaguing the Green Line extension came from a lack of staff training for the new contracting model. As for attracting the best leadership to run our systems, I asked what public transit general managers were paid in other parts of the country a $400,000 figure was raised, which is far above the MBTA GM pay of $160,000. Ask any major sports team or Fortune 500 company how they build success and they will tell you it’s about investing in top talent.
3). Widening sources of mass transit funding: New York is currently making news as Governor Cuomo announces major infrastructure enhancement projects. Craig Stewart of New York’s MTA talked about the current and proposed expansion projects for Manhattan’s subway system and said that finding new, innovative revenue sources such as value capture need to be explored for these projects. Mortimer Downey added that there were districts in the Washington D.C. Metro area that supported a regional tax for specific transportation projects that are now delivering significant economic impact. The panel agreed that the main areas of investment in a transit system are achieving and sustaining a state of good repair, meeting ridership demand, and supporting strategic expansion to encourage economic development.
4). The business community plays a critical role in mass transit. The panel unanimously agreed that having a strong business community voice demanding the best transportation system possible and linking it to job creation and the economy is crucial for public and legislative support. Joe Casey told the audience that the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce makes it clear to government that businesses look for two things when deciding where to locate: a strong workforce, and the ability of the current transportation system to move people to jobs.
From listening to our members, I know that transportation is a top policy issue for the business community in 2016. In fact many of you are angry about the current state of our transportation system – especially when it comes to the T – and how it affects the economy and your workforce. I can assure you that the Chamber will continue to be a strong voice on this issue and today’s panel discussion was just the beginning of our work to improve our transportation infrastructure.