Colorado Capitol Report

Chair’s Roundtable: “Homelessness, a Business Issue”


Chair’s Roundtable: “Homelessness, a Business Issue”

On September 7th, the Chair’s Roundtable featured a panel conversation titled, “Homelessness, a Business Issue.”  Panelists included:

  • Beth Moyski, Senior Vice President Special Districts, Downtown Denver Partnership
  • John Parvensky, President & CEO, Colorado Coalition for the Homeless
  • Kristin Toombs, Director, Office of Homeless Initiatives, Colorado Department of Local Affairs
  • David Zucker, Founder & CEO, Zocalo Community Development

Key points included:

  1. The problem has grown and continues to grow.
  2. Homelessness is a “systemic” issue that has been exacerbated by decreased availability of affordable housing caused by rising property values and rents, particularly in gentrified neighborhoods and via redevelopment.
  3. There are examples of successful solutions to addressing homelessness.  In order to really begin reducing the problem, these programs need to be significantly scaled – that takes much more funding and community support.

Read more from news coverage of the panel below:

Colorado Sun: Denver business leaders want immediate answers to homelessness as downtown struggles to rebound

Denverite: Downtown businesses say rising homelessness is hurting them, even if it’s just the perception that it brings more crime

For more information about joining the Chair’s Roundtable and participating in future programs like the one above, contact Dave Tabor, DTabor@COchamber.com.


EXECs (Leadership Colorado) | Ardent Mills Tour

The 2022 EXECs cohort enjoyed a wonderful tour of Ardent Mills. The group was hosted by the CEO, Dan Dye, Chief Growth Officer Angie Goldberg, Chief People Officer Heather Dumas, and other senior leaders. The group toured the Ardent Mills Innovation Center and their Commerce City Mill. It was fascinating to hear that Ardent Mills feeds 1 in 3 people in North America and produces 35% of the US’s flour consumption.

Applications for the 2023 Leadership Colorado Program (formerly known as the EXECs Advocacy Program) are open. Applications are due by October 31st, 2022.


New Study Highlights State and National Workforce Challenges

The National Association of State Chambers (NASC) released a comprehensive 50-state study on workforce engagement by their members and the best practices that have emerged for the first time this week.

The 50-state summary of workforce and related education programming and advocacy work demonstrates that there is no shortage of good ideas and effective practices among state chambers and their partners. The Colorado Chamber of Commerce was featured in the workforce study alongside other state chambers. Our involvement in the workforce and education policy areas through our advocacy program and policy councils was a key highlight in the report.

On a wider scale, the report boasts the data and strategies of the Colorado Workforce Development Council (CWDC), which appears more detailed and attuned to current, demand-driven thinking in workforce development over other states.

The study also notes that while Colorado ranks 12th nationally in overall prosperity, we rank 37th when accounting for racial disparities between white residents and residents of color. The CWDC has developed a Talent Equity Agenda to address prosperity gaps in the state. The Talent Equity Agenda includes testing strategies to close prosperity gaps including career navigation, closing the digital divide, post-secondary credential attainment, and equitable hiring, compensation, and promotion practices.

The Colorado Chamber will be focusing on proactive ways to address workforce strategies and skilled worker needs which were identified as member challenges in recent chamber surveys.

To review the entire NASC Workforce Report, click here.