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Press Release: Chamber Welcomes New Committee Chairpersons

The Santa Maria Valley Chamber welcomes two new chairpersons: Jason Buchanan, Chair of Business & Government Roundtable and Claudia Ortiz, Chair of the Hispanic Business Committee. Both individuals are longtime residents of Santa Maria Valley.

“I was approached by Glenn Morris about two years ago to join the roundtable, and have found it to be an incredible opportunity for local business members to communicate and strategize with the government agencies in our area. The roundtable brings a direct pathway for the two sides to collaborate and find ways to push our policies, economy, and community forward,” said Jason Buchanan. “My goals for this fiscal year are to continue to build my business and increasingly support the local businesses that require sound insurance advice, especially in a time when many businesses may be financially struggling.”

Jason serves as an employee benefits and commercial insurance advisor for HUB International’s Santa Maria office. He is grateful to be in a position to give back to the community that has provided for him throughout his life.

“We are excited to have Jason step forward as the key volunteer leader for the Business & Government Roundtable,” said Glenn Morris, president & CEO of the Santa Maria Valley Chamber. “The Roundtable is an important forum to ensure the Chamber is aligned with our members in our advocacy work. Additionally, it provides an opportunity for us to bring leaders from the employer community and public agencies together to share information and perspectives.”

Morris added, “Jason brings a fresh perspective as a younger leader in our community, which will help as we keep our focus on the future of the Santa Maria Valley.”

“As young professionals continue to take over more leadership roles in our area, I hope I can help bridge the gap and be a resource for everyone around me. The generational shift in both politics and business is going to change the way we look at approaching policy framework, workplace environments, community environments, and much more. We need to have every type of person who will be a member of our community feel represented and advocated for, and I hope to be someone who can help the organization accomplish that,” said Buchanan.

Equally invested in advocating for the local community and the future of the Santa Maria Valley is Claudia Ortiz, Branch Manager & Business Development Officer for First Bank in Santa Maria. She has an extensive background in banking and also serves as a board member for United Way of Northern Santa Barbara County. Ortiz was appointed Chair of the Hispanic Business Committee after her noted dedication and attendance to every meeting since its inception.

“Claudia is passionate about Hispanic representation, and wants to create more visibility and opportunities for voices to be heard from the Hispanic community. She wants to play an active role in shaping the community and representing the voice of the Hispanic community,” said David Hernandez, Hispanic Business Outreach and Service Representative of the Chamber.

The Hispanic Business Committee serves to develop the local Hispanic economy, encourage Hispanic community engagement and participation in local events and government affairs, and to support our local Hispanic youth by providing them with tools and connecting them to resources, scholarships, and job placements.

“As the chair of the Hispanic Business Committee, my goal is to bring together a group of individuals interested and invested in expanding resources to support the success of local Hispanic businesses,” said Ortiz. “I invite those interested in becoming involved to join us for our regular monthly meetings.”

The Hispanic Business Committee meets the first Tuesday of each month at 11am at the Historic St. Peter's Church off Broadway in Santa Maria. For more information, please reach out to David Hernandez, Hispanic Business Outreach and Service Representative at (805) 925-2403, ext. 818 or

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