I'm a CCE: Doris Carson Williams

Governance and Leadership /

Doris Carson Williams, CCE
President & CEO
African American Chamber of Commerce of Western Pennsylvania

How has the CCE program helped you grow as a chamber leader?
The CCE program has been a wonderful way to enhance my effectiveness in engaging with our members and the corporate community. I wear my CCE pin when I meet with corporate leaders and share with them the benefits of being part of an international network of chamber executives. This affiliation adds credibility when seeking corporate engagement. In turn, they have reached out to me for input and suggestions to help improve support for small businesses. On a personal level, the network of CCEs is a great resource for developing strategy and building my connections with chamber executives.

What is your favorite aspect of working in the chamber profession? 
My favorite aspect of working in the chamber profession is advocating for the membership. I enjoy working with people and gain satisfaction in, not only helping members gain business opportunities, but also developing programs to support their efforts. Helping small businesses grow is very rewarding.

What advice would you give to the next generation of professionals?
Be patient. Understand that it is the process of developing relationships that produces opportunities to reach your goals. It is about sharing with others. It is ‘we’, not ‘I’, that gets the job done.

What is your hidden talent?
In high school I took up sewing. I enjoy the methodical process of putting things together and developing a finished product. Today, I love doing needlepoint. My greatest piece is completing a canvas of Monet’s Flower Garden that hangs in my dining room. It took three years to complete—it even traveled with me over three continents as I worked on it. I am very proud of it.

Four words that describe you?  
Diligent, committed, thoughtful and supportive.

What is one thing you can’t live without?
I love chocolate. It’s a daily must-have that gives me energy.

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