BC Chamber CEO Makes PG Pit Stop
Prince George, B.C. – The new president and CEO of the BC Chamber of Commerce is on a provincial tour and he paid Prince George a visit Thursday.
38-year-old Vancouver resident Val Litwin comes from an entrepreneurial background and has been involved in a number of successful ventures.
Among them was his launch in 2002 of a social enterprise called the Kindness Crew and Extreme Kindness which spawned a best selling book (Cool to be Kind).
Five years later he and two friends launched Blo Blow Dry Bar which specialized in female hair services and led to 20 locations spanning two countries (Canada and the U.S.).
Most recently he served as the CEO of the Whistler Chamber of Commerce. Litwin says his goal now is to modernize the provincial Chamber.
“We need to turn into a modern membership so we need to engage that new generation of entrepreneurs that say that’s my tribe, I belong there,” he says.
“We need to focus more on the experience not the transaction of what we do around membership and I think there are some really exciting partnership opportunities out there to create more value for our members as well.”
Litwin will also lobby for skills and training and for natural resource projects like Site-C.
“Obviously we’re pro-resource development but we like to see that in a sustainable way as do our members.”
He says another “untapped area” he’d like to explore is data collection.
“To inform better decisions and to drive better policy and advocacy work. So one of the things I would like to see is how do we leverage that network to get better, deeper data,” says Litwin.
“To really inform much clearer conversations. That is our biggest opportunity and we need to look within first to see what it will take to create that data web, what technology do we need to push it to the regional level to make sure we’re speaking to our members and we’re capturing that intelligence.”
He says that will help inform the policy work that they do which they will ultimately present to government.
“It could be in any area, to use an example, how do folks feel about carbon pricing? This could be a real game changer for industry but we have lots of members out there so we need to have a conversation around what everything thinks about it.”