• Daedalus Dedication, Maxwell-Gunter AFB, Montgomery Alabama, Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce, Montgomery Chamber, MGMChamber
  • Montgomery Chamber's Military Affairs Priorities

  • The Chamber’s Military Affairs team focuses on the protection and growth of the Montgomery-River Region’s military installations and missions which provide over $2.6B in annual economic impact and represent slightly over 20% of the region’s GDP. The Chamber works to ensure local military missions are ready to meet the changing needs of our national defense through collaboration, advocacy, and community support. Community support includes direct financial investment in base-supporting infrastructure, but it also includes important services military families depend upon like schools, education, housing, healthcare, and other social services that promote a high quality of life. The Chamber’s Military Affairs priorities include infrastructure and capacity, workforce development, education, quality of life, and entrepreneurship.

  • Infrastructure & Capacity Infrastructure & Capacity

  • Military personnel rely on local and regional roads, buildings, facilities, utilities, and land to support a wide and diverse set of military missions from professional military education to projecting power through F-35 fighter aircraft. The Montgomery Chamber advocates for legislative support and funding for local missions and units to support force modernization, service end strength, lethality, and readiness to protect the Nation. 

  • Military Spouse Employment/Workforce Development Military Spouse Employment/Workforce Development

  • Military families are a significant part of the Montgomery-River Region’s workforce and community. They bring perspectives from throughout the nation that expand our view and enhance our diversity. However, military spouses and families also face significant employment challenges due to frequent relocations, entering or reentering the workforce, and transferring licenses and credentials to new states. The Chamber is poised to support and capitalize on this high-quality workforce by working with local military organizations and community partners to develop innovative opportunities for spousal employment, reciprocity of professional licenses between the states for military spouses, and to develop better connections to jobs for those who transition out of the military. 

  • Education Education

  • On average, military families move every two to three years but roughly 750 of Air University’s in-residence military students attend ten-month programs which can exacerbate transition challenges for their school age children. Additionally, although the situation is improving, Alabama’s public K-12 school system performed poorly in past years which concerned military families. Cognizant of the local schools’ impact on Airmen’s acceptance of assignments and their continuation on active duty, the Chamber in partnership with local organizations, the State of Alabama, and Air University established the Maxwell-River Region Partnership for Educational Excellence which focuses on improving the quality of education available to all families. As a member of the Partnership, the Montgomery Chamber advocated for legislation to allow children of active-duty parents who live off base to attend the on-base DoDEA school. This one-of-a-kind DoD pilot-program dramatically improved access to Maxwell AFB’s K-8 school. 31% of the school’s students are enrolled under this program which was highlighted in U.S. News & World Report and contributed to the Chamber, along with several partner organizations, winning the Military Child Education Coalition’s Pete Taylor Partnership of Excellence Award in 2022.

  • Affordable Housing/Quality of Life Affordable Housing/Quality of Life

  • The fence line surrounding military bases doesn’t matter when tackling quality of life and place issues facing our military service members and their families. Like everyone, service members and military families want to live in communities that provide high-quality services including healthcare, education, housing, social services, childcare, and special needs programs. The Montgomery Chamber is dedicated to identifying and promoting innovative solutions to provide these services and to make service members feel welcomed and valued in the Montgomery-River Region. The Montgomery Whitewater project is a great example. Located adjacent to Maxwell AFB, Whitewater will provide outdoor activities like whitewater rafting, ziplines, hiking, running trails, and mountain biking, along with a variety of entertainment options to include concerts and special events, restaurants, an outdoor beer garden, hotels, and shopping. Developing new affordable housing for military families is also a major objective the Chamber’s Maxwell Gateway Project, a cooperative effort between state, county, and city officials. With Whitewater providing a crucial developmental catalyst and a complimentary plan to improve the adjacent I-65 Corridor, the essential infrastructure to improve the residential, entertainment, and retail environment near the Maxwell AFB is either in-place or in progress.

  • Entrepreneurship Entrepreneurship

  • According to a WalletHub study, Montgomery is the nation’s 23rd best community for entrepreneurs to start a business in part due to a variety of public-private partnerships with local military organizations that focus on tech, innovation, and entrepreneurship. MGMWERX, a partnership between Air University and DEFENSEWERX helps solve warfighter challenges with collaborative and innovative solutions. The Lab on Dexter is a public-private partnership to grow Montgomery’s innovation ecosystem through entrepreneurial education, business incubation and acceleration, and minority business development. The Business & Enterprise Systems Product Innovation (BESPIN) unit is the approved Air Force (AF) Software Factory to build mobile and web-hosted applications with solutions made by Airmen for Airmen. BESPIN continues to grow in the Montgomery area and has established relationships with the MGM Tech lab, Air University (through AUix) and local universities.

  • Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce
    600 S. Court St, P.O. Box 79
    Montgomery, Alabama 36101
    Tel: 334.834.5200   Fax: 334.265.4745

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