Since the 1940s, the Tampa Bay business community, led by the Tampa Bay Chamber, has enjoyed a close working relationship with the MacDill Air Force Base – a vital part of our nation's defense and an important training location for those who safeguard America. We understand the importance of promoting and supporting our brave men and women who serve our country and call our community home.

Awards & Recognitions

2021 – Tampa receives Military Spouse Impact Award for Community of the Year.
2019 – Tampa is now recognized as a Military Spouse Economic Empowerment Zone (MSEEZ).
2018 – Tampa Bay named a Great American Defense Community
2018 – U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation – Hiring Our Heroes Chamber of Valor

Military Advisory Committee

The purpose of the Chamber’s Military Advisory Committee is to support military family readiness and quality of life initiatives that ensure Tampa Bay is postured for defense growth. Through the Chamber’s Vision 2026 Plan, the Military Advisory Committee will advocate for legislative priorities that enhance quality of life for military families, connect the Tampa Bay business community with military affiliated talent to address workforce needs and diversify the Chamber’s membership by engaging military affiliated members. The Military Advisory Committee is part of the Tampa Bay Chamber Foundation.

2022 Chair

Chris Chambers – Tampa Electric | TECO Peoples Gas

Staff Contact

Katie Lopez – Senior Director, Military and Workforce Development

Military Council

The purpose of the Military Council is to establish Tampa Bay as a center of government contracting excellence by supporting the local GovCon ecosystem. Through the Chamber’s Vision 2026 Plan, the Military Council will advocate for legislative priorities of importance to the GovCon ecosystem, diversify the Chamber’s membership by engaging GovCon affiliated members, and connect the Tampa Bay business community with MacDill Air Force Base.

2022 Chair

Lauren Weiner – WWC Global

Staff Contact

Katie Lopez – Senior Director, Military and Workforce Development

Military Appreciation
Signature Event

Military Appreciation

A grand salute to Tampa Bay’s armed forces, this event is the Chamber’s opportunity to recognize the contributions of MacDill Air Force Base and the US Coast Guard to our community. Annually, more than 400 guests join in honoring those who serve our country at home and abroad.

Business With The Government

This series is focused on preparing local companies to contract with the federal government. Each event in the series will highlight the different stages of contracting; from acquisition to scaling and sustaining growth. There are 3 events each year.

Command Teams Reception

An opportunity for members to network with military leadership at MacDill equivalent to civilian C-Suite leadership. This event is hosted annually.

Operation Partnership

Operation Partnership

Operation Partnership is a series that helps transitioning service members and military spouses develop professional connections within the Tampa Bay business community. Participants are not required to commit to all three events however they are encouraged to participate in as many as possible to maximize their networking opportunities. During the 2020 program, over 150 business leaders and service members participated.

The overall goal of Operation Partnership is not to provide employment placement for service members and spouses; instead, the program focuses on preparing them for entering the Tampa Bay business community and assisting them in building their professional network.

Employer Roundtable

Held twice a year, this is an opportunity for employers to learn more about recruiting and retaining military affiliated talent. Topics covered include programs designed to connect employers with military affiliated talent, funding sources to upskill and train veterans in the workplace, and resources to support companies that employ members of the Guard and Reserve.

Transition Tampa Bay

Transition Tampa Bay is a professional development series, led by Tampa Bay Chamber members, for service members who are preparing to transition from active duty to the Tampa Bay business community within the next year. Building on the Transition Assistance Program curriculum, Operation Partnership: Transition Tampa Bay focuses on career exploration, building & leveraging professional relationships, understanding corporate culture, and preparing for the hiring process.

Civilian Career Day

Civilian Career Day is held in August and provides transitioning service members and military spouses the opportunity to spend a half day at work with a Chamber member. Pairs are assigned based on industry interest.

Tampa Bay @ Sunset

Operation Partnership: Tampa Bay @ Sunset is held in October and is a modification of a traditional Chamber after hours event. Participants from the first two days are encouraged to attend this casual networking event to further expand their professional network.

State of the Base

Forum for members to receive first-hand information and have direct questions answered by top base and defense leadership. Highlights include the base’s economic impact and opportunities for MacDill to share their priorities, progress, and partnership opportunities. This event is hosted annually.

Transition Tampa Bay: Industry Connect

The Transition Tampa Bay: Industry Connect series focuses on providing transitioning service members, who are at least nine months from their end of service date, with an opportunity to learn more about different companies in the Tampa Bay market prior to leaving active duty. These events are not focused on immediate employment needs but instead helps service members better understand corporate roles and opportunities as they explore and develop their civilian career path.

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