A History of Delivering the Capital

Over 79 years ago, on June 26, 1938, incorporation papers were filed at City Hall to establish a Chamber of Commerce in the nation’s capital. Originally known as the Washington Chamber of Commerce, the organization was initially formed to provide services for African–American businesses in the city. As a result, in 1946 the name of the organization was changed to the Negro Chamber of Commerce to reflect the unique needs of black businesses at that time.

A decade later in 1956, the Chamber re-evaluated the needs of businesses in the city and changed its name to the District of Columbia Chamber of Commerce. With the new name came a new direction as the Chamber expanded its operations to address not only the needs of minority firms, but of all the District.

The DC Chamber of Commerce has continued to uphold its commitment to deliver the capital to businesses and citizens by tailoring our membership campaigns. We provide invaluable tools to help businesses develop, in addition to advocacy efforts which positively impact business growth and sustainability. We leverage relationships with key contacts in the DC Council and the Federal Government in order to positively impact regulatory reform with the goal of maintaining our current business community while attracting new businesses to the District. From educational outreach, networking and contracting opportunities, the DC Chamber works to ensure you get the social, intellectual, business, and political capital to make the District a better place to live, work and play.

It is the Chamber’s vision to create a vibrant, thriving economy that improves the quality of life for all in the District establishing mutually beneficial partnerships between business, government and the community. To achieve that vision, we have made it our mission to be the most valuable resource and leading advocate for businesses throughout the District of Columbia.