Companies Donate $250K for Fort Smith Chamber Remodel

by Talk Business & Politics ([email protected]) 92 views 

Tim Allen, president and CEO of the Fort Smith Regional Chamber of Commerce, knew the home office had to be renovated. After all, the décor had not been updated in 30 years.

Only one problem: Allen didn’t have any money. So what did he do? He sold naming rights to each room in the building, and in so doing, garnered contributions from heavyweights like Propak Logistics, Arvest Bank, Umarex and First National Bank of Fort Smith.

The final tally was an impressive $250,000, and Allen put it to good use. He took care of the basics like new paint, carpeting and furniture. But Allen also paid attention to some of the finer details.

Vintage chandeliers original to the building were pulled out of storage and hung in the lobby, and original art was hung on the walls. And the “closing room,” where Fort Smith leaders try to seal the deal on economic development projects, was equipped with a brand new audio-visual system.

“It was time to bring the chamber into the 21st Century,” Allen said.