SANTA ANA, CA – Christopher Lynch, Vice President of Business, Economic Development and Tourism at the Irvine Chamber of Commerce, has been selected to receive SBA’s Small Business Champion Award. Lynch, who was nominated for the award by Randal Long, will receive the award in recognition of his efforts to introduce new programs and services that give small businesses access to financing, provide training for profitable growth strategies, and create awareness of international business opportunities.
While overseeing many of the traditional programs and services that provide benefits to the Irvine Chamber’s membership, Lynch has also started the Irvine Entrepreneur Forum event to showcase local start-ups to investors; created an Angel Investor online video series to inform and inspire entrepreneurs; started a blog and interview series called Digital Irvine to highlight the digital media cluster in Irvine; created webinar programs for micropreneurs, international business, and town hall meetings; and revamped the Irvine economic development website to include a global business component, with links to information, support resources, and recorded webinar files. More recently, Lynch lead the conception and implementation of the Global Business initiative at the Irvine Chamber. The Global Business initiative includes a popular semi-monthly webinar series featuring export and import opportunities for U.S. businesses.
In 2010, Lynch oversaw the implementation of an Export Trade Partnership (ETAP) among the Irvine Chamber of Commerce, the U.S. Small Business Administration, and the U.S. Commercial Service. This well-received program featured a variety of private and public sector speakers discussing issues ranging from international market research to trade finance.
Prior to joining the Irvine Chamber of Commerce, Lynch enjoyed a career as a foreign service officer and international economist with the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Department of Commerce, serving at US embassies in Spain, Chile, Germany, El Salvador and Colombia, as well as in Washington D.C.. After leaving public service, Lynch ran his own international trade consulting firm for a couple years before becoming Executive Vice President at the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce.
In addition to his busy leadership role at the Irvine Chamber, Lynch is also an adjunct professor of international business at Golden Gate University. He’s also a highly respected authority on economic development issues, contributing to a variety of print and online media sources such as Business Week, It’sYourBiz.com, SmallBizTrends.com, MarketWatch.com, and the Orange County Register, among others. Lynch is a sought after speaker and contributes his knowledge of economic and business development best practices to discussions including the World Affairs Council of Orange County and British American Chamber of Business Council October 2011 Forum and as a panelist in California State University, Fullerton’s “Creative Communities and the Creative Economy”.
Lynch will be recognized along with fellow small business champions and owners at the 49th Annual Small Business Week Awards Celebration, to be held at the City National Grove of Anaheim from 11:30 am to 2:00pm on Tuesday, June 5, 2012. For more information about the event, please contact Doug Dare at (714) 560-7467. To RSVP, please visit www.49thannualsbwawards.eventbrite.com.