Chamber Hosts 2016 International Tribute Dinner

dsc_0473The Chamber hosted its International Tribute Dinner Thursday, December 8 at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront. More than 200 business executives, community leaders, and elected officials gathered to hear a thought-provoking discussion – moderated by Chamber VP Paola Avila – with former United Nations Ambassador Enrique Berruga-Filloy and Dr. Antonio Ortiz-Mena, the former Head of Economic Affairs at the Mexican Embassy in Washington, D.C.

The main topic of discussion: how a Trump presidency will affect the cross-border economy.

“This year’s presidential election has put a spotlight on our binational region, making our role at the Chamber as a champion for cross-border commerce, connections and collaboration more important than ever…

Those of us who live and work here are embracing this time as an opportunity to showcase the people, projects, and attributes that make Cali-Baja one of the most vibrant and globally competitive regions in the world and we are proud to be a part of that effort.”

dsc_0502Jerry Sanders, San Diego Chamber President & CEO

While both guests agreed Trump’s attitudes towards Mexico and NAFTA are troubling, they also remained hopeful, emphasizing the need for local players to step up. Similarly, Marcela Celorio – the “cross-border” Mexican Consul General – delivered an address emphasizing the two countries’ common values and called upon leaders to continue to follow them in the aftermath of the election.

dsc_0511The Chamber also presented two awards recognizing projects that have made a difference in enhancing the economic prosperity of our border region:

  • SMINSA and Scripps Health were presented the “Cross-Border Collaboration” award for their partnership in building the first binational hospital.
  • Cross Border Xpress – who recently celebrated its one-year anniversary – was presented with the “Change Maker” award for revolutionizing travel between our countries and showcasing the great opportunity that exists through collaboration.

For more highlights and photos from the 2016 International Tribute Dinner, follow the hashtag #ChamberTribute16 on Twitter and check out the Chamber’s photo album on Facebook.