Robert H. Clapper, II leaves behind strong legacy as the Inaugural President & CEO of the Prince William Chamber of Commerce
Prince William Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer, Robert H. Clapper, II announced on Tuesday, February 18, 2014 that he is stepping down from his post after serving as the organization’s Inaugural President since 2010. In his capacity, Clapper has led the business and advocacy organization through a period of significant transition, growth and success.
Deborah L. Jones, the Chamber’s Chief Operating Officer, will serve as Acting Chief Executive Officer, effective February 18, 2014. Jones’ chamber career began in 1990 and she has served as the Prince William Chamber’s COO since July 2011.
“Together, Prince William County, the Cities of Manassas and Manassas Park, and the Prince William Chamber owe Rob a great debt for his service. He will be missed and we wish him only the best for the future. Through his leadership, and in partnership with the Board’s five year strategic plan, we’ve crafted a clear vision for where we’re headed and how the Chamber and the entire business community can best be supported,” said Bill White, Chairman of the Prince William Chamber’s Board of Directors.
“Rob has decided to leave us in pursuit of new opportunities aimed at supporting his passion for veterans and veteran’s issues, but he has brought an outstanding team together and we’re on the right track. We look forward to staying the course for even greater success for our community,” White said.
“Rob leaves a strong and lasting legacy for the Prince William Chamber and the entire business community of Northern Virginia, and we truly appreciate all he has done for our member businesses, and the communities we serve,” said Tim Jackson, Inaugural Chairman of the Prince William Chamber. ” Rob has been at the center of the organization’s transformation into a still-growing powerhouse in the landscape of the business communities of Northern Virginia. I was part of the search committee that eagerly endorsed his hire and celebrated when he agreed to serve as our Inaugural CEO. He far exceeded our expectations as an expert, savvy, and efficient manager and motivating leader, but he has been much more than that; he has also been a considerate, humble, and generous colleague and friend among his office staff and among all of us on the Board.”
During his time as CEO, Clapper guided significant transformation, growth and success at the Prince William Chamber:
- Successfully led and facilitated a Five Year Strategic Plan (2011-2015). This includes organizational successes that have enabled the Prince William Chamber to operate efficiently and offer the highest level of support to area businesses.
- Gained recognition by the Washington Business Journal as the largest Chamber in the DC metro area and by the American Council of Chamber Executives as a national leader for recruitment of new members.
- Introduced a new billing cycle that offers a more consistent cash flow.
- Introduced pwchamberadvocate.org to better inform and engage members on policy issues and initiated the formation of the Prince William Chamber Political Action Committee to respond to and support the Chamber’s public policy agenda.
- Played an integral role in assuring General Assembly passage of the historic transportation funding bill, HB 2313, which will generate over $3.4 Billion in transportation projects statewide over the next five years plus an addition over $1.5 Billion for road improvements in Northern Virginia.
- Directed an initiative that led to VDOT study of economic impact of North-South Corridor of Statewide Significance.
- Successfully advocated for continued BPOL reform, with Prince William County raising the threshold and the City of Manassas Park adopting development incentives that include BPOL exemptions.