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2022 Affiliate Chamber Spotlight: Altoona Area Chamber of Commerce

Altoona Chamber 2022

May 24, 2022

Chamber Name + Website

Altoona Area Chamber of Commerce

Elected Leader for 2022

2022 Chamber President: Joshua Dunwoody, Tactical Advantage Business Solutions

Professional Staff Leader of the Chamber

Executive Vice President: Melissa Horton

Number of Members


How Does a Business Join Your Chamber?

We typically like to meet with new potential Members so we can give them greater detail on what we have to offer as an organization and to learn more about their expectations for Membership. You can easily join online, but we would prefer to meet with you!

What Inspired You to First Get Involved with Your Chamber?

I’ve grown up in the area and had been running Mac7 with my hair on fire working for a company downtown that was going through some serious organizational changes. I wondered if there would be any opportunity in my hometown to make a difference and this opportunity literally came to me at my son’s high school track meet.

What is a Signature Offering of Your Chamber?

Something we hear over and over from existing Members is that we are approachable and down to earth with a real passion for building up and promoting our community and our Members. We are a staff of two but operate like a much bigger office given what we accomplish in a year’s time.

What is Your Chamber’s Biggest Accomplishment in the Past 12 Months?

As with all CoC’s, we’ve been instrumental in helping our business community survive unprecedented times — even if it is by a thread. We’re making sure we’re providing the resources our people need to navigate these waters. We’ve managed to host all of our events and special programming so our businesses could connect with their consumers, drive the economy and continue with professional development. We have been and will always be, here for our businesses, our community and our visitors.

What Initiative/Project Are You Looking Forward to in the Upcoming Year?

We’re digging deeper into the Olde Town Revitalization CIP by helping with property purchases and working with engineers to develop the vision of the area. We hope to have our new segue that connects riders on the bike trail to our retail area by this fall.

What Partnership Tools/Resources Have Been Most Beneficial to Your Chamber Members?

During the pandemic, we witnessed an influx of entrepreneurs come out of the woodwork. We have a great relationship with The Partnership and have sent several startups (or even those just thinking about starting a business) to the organization to learn more about the entrepreneurial process and how to do it successfully.

What Are Your Upcoming Events?

  • Friday, June 3 – Saturday, June 11 – Annual Wine & Craft Beer Fest
  • Friday, July 15 – Golf Outing at Toad Valley Golf Course
  • Tuesday, Aug. 2 – National Night Out with the Altoona Police & Fire Dept
  • Tuesday, Aug. 16 – SEP Back to School Breakfast
  • Monday, Sept. 5 – RVTV Comes to Altoona
  • Saturday, Sept. 24 – Olde Town Farm to Table Dinner
  • Wednesday, Oct. 5 – First Responders Appreciation Luncheon
  • Wednesday, Oct. 26 – Business Trick or Treat Night

The Greater Des Moines Partnership is the fourth largest regional Chamber of Commerce in the nation. Learn more about Partnership Affiliate Chambers, browse the Membership Directory and read additional Affiliate Chamber spotlights.

Melissa Horton

Melissa Horton is the Executive Vice President of the Altoona Area Chamber. Born and raised in Altoona, Melissa learned to connect, collaborate and cultivate in her position. Prior to the Chamber, she worked for the Des Moines Register. Currently, she is on the Board of Directors for Caring Hands Outreach Center, a food pantry for those facing food insecurity.