The Chinese Chamber of Commerce was incorporated in 1939 when discrimination against Chinese was prevalent. The Chamber’s priority as an organized group was to integrate into the mainstream of society through participation and involvement in community affairs.
The Chinese Chamber of Commerce has a long history of assistance and guidance to its members and takes pride in the fact that the Chinese people have prospered through hard work and education and are now respected members of society. The Chamber today continues to seek ways to benefit its members and is dedicated to serving the business community as it has since its inception. The Chamber is an ongoing and consistent partner between the Chinese business community and federal, state, county, and city governments, and is a link between the Chinese community and corporate, minority, and other congruous business entities.
As the first organization formed to benefit the livelihoods of the Chinese community, almost all of the merchants and their families held memberships. In the face of criticism for their perceived lack of patriotism, the leaders in the Chamber initiated the Chinese celebration of the Fourth of July, a tradition which is ongoing to this day.
For more than fifty years, in cooperation with the Arizona Department of Motor Vehicles, the Chamber held sessions twice a year to help the Chinese community get through the process of getting their drivers licenses.
The Chinese Chamber of Commerce consulted with the City of Phoenix archaeologist and America West Arena officials to create the exhibit of relics taken from the ground where Chinatown once stood and upon which America West Arena was built. The exhibit, referred to as “The Chinatown Project” was housed in America West Arena as a tribute to the Chinese community and the history of old Chinatown.
Events presented by the Chamber include its much-anticipated annual Anniversary and Chinese New Year celebration banquet, at which outstanding students whose parents are members receive scholarships. The Chamber also holds business mixers throughout the year to introduce member businesses and to provide networking opportunities and recognition of its corporate members.
The Chinese Chamber of Commerce was one of six founding members of the Arizona Federation of Minority Business Associations, a unique coalition of minority and small business advocates.