Joey BunchJoey BunchAugust 31, 20173min1090

Tickets are on sale for the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce’s 133rd annual meeting, but a first as well, as Denise Burgess becomes the first African-American woman to lead the 3,000-member organization.

The luncheon Wednesday at the Hyatt Regency Denver at the Colorado Convention Center begins at 11 with networking among about 1,000 metro Denver leaders followed by the program from 11:30 to 1. Individual tickets are $105.

Burgess will accept the gavel from outgoing board chairman Todd Munson, who is the executive vice president and director of commercial banking for Vectra Bank.

The new chairwoman is the president has been on the chamber board since 2010. She is the CEO of Burgess Services, Inc., a construction management firm based in Denver.

She has been listed among the Top 25 Most Powerful Women by the Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce. The Girl Scouts of Colorado named Burgess a Woman of Distinction, and she has received the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award and the Davide E. Baily Small Business Advocate Award.

After getting a degree in journalism from the University of Northern Colorado, Burgess began her career in broadcast management. In 1994 went to work with her father, who passed away in 2002. She turned his heating and air conditioning business into a nationwide firm that provides construction management, commissioning and quality assurance/quality control services. The company’s clients have included the City and County of Denver Justice Center, the Corp of Engineers Southeastern Headquarters in Miami and the Westin Hotel at Denver International Airport.

The Denver chamber said Burgess Services was awarded the largest contract ever to a black-owned business, $39.6 million, for mechanical work at DIA.

“Denise credits her continued support from family and friends as part of her success, along with her dedicated employees,” the chamber said in a bio. “Never taking anything for granted, Denise regularly takes time out of her busy schedule to give back to the Denver community both personally and professionally. The Burgess Family Fund was established through the Denver Foundation in 2013 with a goal of funding the education of minority women interested in STEM and construction. The Burgess Family Fund has donated to over a dozen Colorado organizations.”

Kelly Brough, the chamber’s president and CEO, will talk about the next year’s priorities for the business community and announce the Del Hock Lifetime Achievement Award.

Author, inventor and “tech trailblazer” Byron Reese, the CEO of Knowingly, is the keynote speaker.

Dan NjegomirDan NjegomirFebruary 23, 20174min470

Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce — a key stakeholder in efforts to forge compromise legislation on construction-liability reform — issued a statement today via Chamber President Kelly Brough opposing one of the pending proposals on the issue, Senate Bill 157:

“Although Senate Bill 157 contains some meaningful reforms to construction defect laws, we’re concerned that it would take away from local control and the critical gap so many municipalities have filled to ensure their citizens have access to affordable workforce housing. We are committed to working with the bill sponsors and the entire legislature to advance meaningful construction defects reform and will continue to advocate for consumer protections, such as informing all owners of a possible construction defect lawsuit, and providing alternatives to costly, long battles in court.”

SB 157 is sponsored by Sen. Angela Williams, D-Denver, and Rep. Jovan Melton, D-Aurora. It is one of several pending proposals to rein in liability for defective construction in the homebuilding industry in hopes of encouraging development of more affordable housing.

The chamber also released its latest stands, pro and con, on some other measures now before the General Assembly:

The Chamber supports:

The Chamber opposes:


John TomasicJohn TomasicJanuary 30, 201714min89

Colorado House Republicans pitched a religious liberty bill last Wednesday to the Democratic-controlled State Affairs committee. It was the same kind of bill that has stirred hornets nest-like national protests in other states for fear that religious liberty might translate on the ground as discrimination. Republicans knew the bill, HB 1013, would die in committee, and it did, on a 6-3 party line vote. Earlier versions have ended the same way the last two years. But the bill sponsors — Rep. Dave Williams, R-Colorado Springs, and Steve Humphrey, R-Eaton — hoped the bill would advance the cause by demonstrating their commitment to it and by building additional support with a well-made case laid out in the public square.


Rachael WrightRachael WrightDecember 8, 201611min70

Fifteen Years Ago this week in the Colorado Statesman … The Colorado Children's Chorale performance at the White House was proclaimed a riveting success. Thirty-two Colorado children performed at a private event at the White House, an experience the now-adults have surely not forgotten. “The Holiday Open House” event was for White House staff, members of Congress, the Secret Service, and members of Washington D.C.’s local fire and police forces. The chorale performed two 45-minute sets — one at the White House entrance and the other in the East Room — consisting of holiday and patriotic music.


Miller HudsonMiller HudsonSeptember 27, 20166min790

Almost any weekday this summer you could spot Denver conventioneers on 16th Street Mall shuttles by the colorful lanyards adorning their necks. It’s usually easy to discern whether these are visiting dentists, geologists, accountants or lawyers after a quick glance at their badges. But the recent 84th Annual Meeting of the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBTTA) was a head scratcher. Seriously, who knew there was an International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association? Hosted in Denver by our very own E-470 Authority, the operators of tolled roads, bridges, HOV/HOT lanes and their vendors from across the country — and world —— assembled to rub elbows and celebrate what they view as a promising business opportunity. With politicians afraid to raise taxes and, in Colorado, voters reluctant to approve them, tolling has a bright future.