The Central Florida Christian Chamber of Commerce was founded in February 2003 by local businesswoman, Lori Slough along with her mother, Faye Hardin, and sister Rhonda Yetman. Together they accomplished something that no one else in Central Florida had been able to do - create a Christian chamber of commerce that lasted more than one year. In 2009, Lori resigned as the executive director of the chamber in order to give more attention to her growing company.
Mark J. Goldstein became the president and CEO of the chamber in May 2009. He has been a Central Florida resident since 1981 and has worked in the faith-based community for the past twenty years in Christian radio, publishing and marketing. As Mark often says, “When I took over the leadership of the chamber, I was smart enough to know I wasn’t smart enough to do it on my own.” He assembled a team of extremely gifted individuals that he trusted and respected, and together they created a revamped chamber with a mission to “build business, build community, and build the Kingdom.”
The signature chamber event is the monthly Business-Building Lunch held on the second Thursday of each month in Faith Hall at First Baptist Church Orlando. Since August 2009, attendees to this monthly event have heard great speakers such as: John Ashcroft, former Attorney General of the United States; David Zerfoss, president of Husqvarna USA; Bob Pettus, former vice-chairman of Coca-Cola Bottling Company; Ann Sonntag, publisher of the Orlando Business Journal; David Nixon, producer of Fireproof and Letter to God; Admiral Vern Clark, former Chief of Staff for the U.S. Navy; Des Cummings Jr. senior vice president of Florida Hospital; Daniel Webster, U.S. Congressman; and Carlos Campo, president of Regent University.
The membership of the chamber continues to grow as local Christian businesspeople realize the benefit of the many monthly events that help build great relationships with others and bring value both professionally and personally.