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2023 Affiliate Chamber Spotlight: Pella Area Community & Economic Alliance

PACE 2023

March 22, 2023

Chamber Name + Website

Pella Area Community & Economic Alliance

Elected leader for 2023

Charlie Daugherty, CFO of Precision, Pulley, & Idler (PPI) and President of the PACE Board

Professional Staff Leader of the Chamber

Karen Eischen IOM, Executive Director

Number of Members

297 members

How Does a Business Join Your Chamber?

Businesses and organizations can visit the “join the PACE Alliance tab at pella.org, email info@pella.org or call our office at (641) 628-2626.

What Inspired You to First Get Involved with Your Chamber?

“Community. The development, resources and events that the PACE Alliance provides for the community are exceptional. I wanted to be a part of the creativity and benefits the PACE Alliance was involved with in the Pella area. I love being a part of the events and elevating our community with quality-of-life connections." – Trish Klok, Events Council Chair.

What is a Signature Offering of Your Chamber?

The PACE Alliance thrives on collaboration. We work closely with our members, through Five Working Councils, to leverage talents and resources within our community. We focus on identifying community needs, then provide solutions with creative innovative programs, initiatives and strategies that support employers, businesses and employees in reaching their highest potential.

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

The PACE Alliance received a Rural Return Grant from Governor Reynolds’ Empower Rural Initiative in December 2021. At the beginning of 2022, we launched the "Make Your Move" Program. The campaign centered around attracting a workforce and people who have a previous connection to Pella through targeted ads on social media. The ads were an intentional effort to re-introduce people to our area and showcase what Pella has to offer now, especially our recreational options! The ads are displayed in various cities all over the country and feature specific keywords focused on the job positions our employers are attempting to fill.

We dedicated the 2022 year to the implementation of the “Make Your Move” Digital Marketing Campaign. The display ads and re-targeting ads boast "Have you seen Pella lately?" with links to our website, Job Board and other options. These ads all work together in a concentrated effort to achieve the goal of driving traffic to both our website and social media channels where the targeted audience can learn more about Pella and discover career and relocation resources. The ads created and put forth gained incredible traction. We saw quantified results and significant increases in engagements on the PACE website.

Here are some of the 2022 results:

  • New Users to PACE Website: +25.3%
  • Facebook Reach: +180.8%
  • Retargeting Ad Impressions: +81.7%

We look forward to continuing to work with our digital marketing agency, in 2023, to ensure relevant and engaging ads are put in front of a potential workforce.

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

As we strive to develop a workforce-friendly atmosphere in Pella, we look to new ideas to engage the community. Creating opportunities for connection among employers, employees, interns, college students and residents is vital to the long-term sustainability of our businesses through workforce attraction and retention. Keeping this in mind, the PACE Alliance launched a new event in Summer 2022.

Introducing, Paddle Battle! This inaugural event was held on July 8, 2022 Lake Red Rock's North Overlook Beach in conjunction with the Lake Red Rock Hot Air Balloon Fest. Participants were tasked with building their own homemade raft, with a group of two to six teammates. You heard that right, making a vessel from scratch! Next, they prepared for battle and raced other teams head-to-head in a bracket-style elimination. The community rallied around the new event, and it was a HUGE hit!

We look forward to hosting the Second Annual Paddle Battle on July 9, 2023. The event serves to combine intern and employee involvement, business connections and team building into a fun and casual atmosphere. The event saw laughter, comradery and fun! We plan to elevate the event even further this year by adding music, food trucks, spectator games and more participants. This is an event where businesses can get involved in a casual atmosphere, showcase their employees and have some good old-fashioned fun!

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

The Partnership's educational events provide opportunities to learn strategies, tools and techniques for all of our members whether they are large corporations or small businesses. The "Top Five for Small Businesses" event series is a great resource our small businesses can tap into for networking, advice from other business owners, discussion around common challenges, learning seminars and information. The 2023 Top Five events are underway — see the lineup here!

What Are Your Upcoming Events?

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.

Karen Eischen

Karen Eischen, Executive Director of the Pella Area Community & Economic Alliance, brings 25+ years of industry expertise. Driven by a commitment to community advancement, she catalyzes ideas into reality through collaborations and partnerships. Karen specializes in identifying locations for new and expanding businesses and facilitating smooth transitions for Pella newcomers.