Despite a months-long war of words with its city-wide counterpart, the Kanata Chamber of Commerce has decided to go ahead and formally change its name – just not to the choice that was originally proposed.
Rosemary Leu is the CEO of the Kanata Chamber of Commerce.
Membership voted last month to support a change in the organization’s name to the West Ottawa Chamber of Commerce, even though the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce had expressed concern about the decision when it was originally proposed.
The Ottawa Chamber worried that having the words “Ottawa” and “Chamber of Commerce” in the names of two separate organizations would create confusion for potential members.
The Kanata organization voted at its annual general meeting, held Wednesday morning, to make a concession to the Ottawa chamber. It instead approved a new name: the West Ottawa Board of Trade.
“Board of Trade and Chamber of Commerce are synonymous terms,” said Rosemary Leu, the Kanata chamber’s CEO.
The organization’s board has also approved the decision, said Ms. Leu. That means that all that’s left to do is go through the formal process of registering the name change.
It wasn’t clear whether this would be enough to alleviate the concerns of the Ottawa Chamber. Ian Faris, the president and CEO, wasn’t immediately available to comment Wednesday on the new name. On Tuesday afternoon – before OBJ learned about the new name – he would only say that meetings between the two sides had yielded “no further progress.”
Ms. Leu said they wrote to the Ottawa Chamber on Tuesday to tell them about the decision, but declined to say anything more about what the response was.
The Kanata chamber decided to change its name earlier this year because it wanted to account for the fact that it represents businesses in other parts of the city, such as Stittsville and West Carleton, as well.