• Mission and History

  • Our commitment to our members and to making the Illinois Valley area a great place to live work and play is reflected in our mission statement: 'To promote the Illinois Valley economy by attracting new jobs and enhancing existing businesses, while valuing quality of life.'

    The history and tradition of our organization stretches back to 1911, when the LaSalle Chamber of Commerce was established. That year also marked the foundation of the United States Chamber of Commerce, of which we are charter members. 

    By 1942, the chamber expanded to serve Peru and Oglesby, prompting a name change to the Chamber of Commerce of LaSalle-Peru-Oglesby. In the mid-1950s, a group of local businessmen realized that a unified effort was needed to develop the full potential of the area, and reorganized in 1957 to include the town of Spring Valley.

    As the Illinois Valley's economic, commercial and industrial base evolved, the chamber extended services to outlying communities, and, in 1968, the group became known as the Illinois Valley Area Chamber of Commerce. Since IVAC became the driving force behind the economic development of the Illinois Valley, we changed our name one last time, in 1994, to Illinois Valley Area Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development.

    Today we serve 24 communities in parts of three counties--Bureau, LaSalle, and Putnam--and many companies, large and small, have planted roots here in the heart of Illinois. Firms here since before the turn of the century continue to be joined by new businesses, creating a diverse and thriving economic environment.