Member of the Month - May 2017
Bill Cunningham, Founder, Foundation for Community Preparedness
For Bill Cunningham, making a difference is at the core of everything he does. So joining the Greater Irvine Chamber of Commerce was the obvious choice.
Involved in non-profits most of his life, Cunningham has served his community in numerous ways from his youth, through his children, and now in the professional arena. From Boy Scouts, Sea Scouts, and U.S. Navy Sea Cadets, to his current activity with the Newport Sea Base as well as other community organizations, giving back has always been important to him.
His volunteerism has extended to the business community. As the founder of the Foundation for Community Preparedness, Cunningham has served on working Boards for several community and business organizations including that of Leadership Tomorrow, and has been a member of local chambers including the Santa Ana where recently he was recognized as the Nonprofit Difference Maker of the Year. He joined the Greater Irvine Chamber in 2015.
“After being a member of several chambers, I knew that the Greater Irvine Chamber was going about economic development in serious and consequential ways,” Cunningham said. “I wanted to be a part of an organization that is making a difference in the local business community.”
In short order, Cunningham became involved in two committees supporting the Greater Irvine Chamber’s economic development efforts. For the International Development Committee he serves on the Importing 101 and the Small- and Medium-business task force. For the Business Attraction & Retention Committee (BAR) he serves as the emergency preparedness task force leader.
“Coordinating emergency preparedness protocol for the Chamber’s BAR committee is an area that I have first-hand experience. Since its establishment in 2008, the Foundation for Community Preparedness has supported local and international chambers of commerce coordinate emergency preparedness teams to help their members prepare to take care of themselves until first responders arrive and to coordinate with each other in a systemic catastrophe,” Cunningham explained. “Sharing this insight has been a joy and a life-long mission for me.”
Regularly attending Greater Irvine Chamber networking and signature events, such as Celebrate Irvine, and all three of the OC World Trade Week events, Cunningham appreciates the value of nurturing relationships in the community and beyond.
“The Greater Irvine Chamber’s strength is in the passion for its members to develop a synergistic relationship in every introduction. It goes so much more than how can I help you, or you help me, but how can we develop a working relationship to better each other, our fellow members, and our community,” he said.
Congratulations, Bill Cunningham!