The Small Business Office supports small businesses through shop local campaigns, networking events, professional development presentations, and celebrations honoring the achievements of businesses in our community!



The Small Business Department organizes the Chamber’s large annual events including our Best Places to Work®Awards and Small Business Awards Gala.

Small Business Awards Gala

For over 30 years the Chamber has been supporting and recognizing individuals and businesses that make a positive impact on our community through their products, services, and outstanding attributes. Our annual Small Business Awards Gala honors the best of the best small business entrepreneurs, young professionals, nonprofits, and executive leadership.

110122 2022 Small Business Awards Gala (Jeff White Photographer - Part 1)

Past Small Business Award Winners

|     2022      |      2021      |     2020      |      2019      |      2018      |      2017    |

Photos from the past events (2012–2022)

In 2022: 

    • 950 tickets sold
    • 400 companies nominated
    • 122 contenders (completed application to compete)
    • 10 winners

Best Places to Work® Awards  

The Chamber’s annual Best Places to Work® awards honors outstanding companies in Huntsville/Madison County whose benefits, policies and practices are among the area’s best. Along with full bragging rights, Best Places to Work® gives businesses a unique tool that cultivates employee engagement in the workplace.

Rankings are based on an Employee Engagement Survey that asks employees to rate their company on a variety of workplace issues and topics. Surveys are administered and tabulated by Quantum Workplace—a third party research firm—and results are exclusively based on survey response participation. All companies are guaranteed anonymity regarding participating and results.

081622 Best Places to Work® Awards (Neville Simpson)

Past Best Places to Work® Award Winners

|     2022      |      2021      |     2020      |      2019      |      2018      |      2017    |

Photos from the past events (2012–2022)

In 2022: 

    • 712 tickets sold
    • 8,263 surveys completed
    • 193 companies nominated
    • 15 award winners 
    • 95 contenders (completed enough surveys to compete)
    • 2 companies inducted into the Best Places to Work® Hall of Fames

2023 Best Places to Work® Award Luncheon, Tuesday, May 9 at VBC South Hall Ballrooms, starting at 11:30 a.m. • More information / Register


Networking is essential in helping to develop and improve interpersonal skill sets, stay on top of industry trends, keep a pulse on the job market, meet prospective mentors, partners, and customers. This is why the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber offers monthly (6 in a calendar year) networking opportunities at alternating times of day to accommodate busy professionals.

Breakfast & Biz

Breakfast & Biz is a fast-paced networking event designed for members of the business community to connect and promote their products or services in a time-saving and effective way. Attendees arrive at work after a light breakfast and plenty of coffee with a handful of business cards, and follow-up calls to be made!

011923 Breakfast & Biz

Photos from the past events

Business After Hours

People do business with people they know, and there’s no better way to get to know other professionals than by attending a Business After Hours! Attendees have the opportunity to build a network, share common challenges, ideas and solutions, and connect with other local business professionals over a drink and lite hors d’oeuvres. With one of the greatest draws to these networking events being the opportunity to meet new professionals, attendees are always encouraged to bring someone new, as well as plenty of business cards!

020923 Business After Hours

Photos from the past events

In 2022, Chamber hosted networking events at the Chamber and member venues throughout the community like The Foundation Coffee House, Yellowhammer Brewery, and Redstone Federal Credit Union.

      • 10 events
      • 685 tickets sold

Upcoming Networking event:


Professional Development Series

The professional world is becoming increasingly competitive and is constantly changing, so professional development and continual learning is more important than ever to be successful and achieve business and career goals. Technologies and best practices are evolving and progressing in every industry, making it crucial for both new and experienced professionals to continue developing their skills and honing their knowledge.

To give professionals the opportunity to learn and apply new knowledge and skills that can help them in their job the Chamber offers monthly programming that further develops computer skills on a variety of platforms (Word, Excel, Google), as well as informative programming on topics like cyber security, human resource management, how to do business with local and federal government entities, trends in marketing, and more.

121422 Doing Business with the FBI

Photos from the past events

C-Suite Speaker Series

The path to entrepreneurship or company leadership is not for the weak. It is a long and arduous process that is filled with moments of success and failure, and feelings of self-doubt and personal satisfaction. Those who find success embrace these trials and tribulations and use them as fuel to move further along the path and to find even greater success. It is from these people that we can learn some of the most powerful lessons to finding success!

The Chamber’s C-Suite Speaker Series, 4 presentations offered once a quarter, brings CEOs, CFOs, COOs and other C-Suite level executives from leading companies/organizations to the podium to share their experiences with success and failure as they made their journey to the C-Suite. These programs build awareness, foster understanding and spark conversation among attendees as they network with these key decision makers in the community.

120922 C-Suite Speaker Series featuring Julie Schumacher

Photos from the past events

In 2022, the Chamber partnered with the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library to offer computer classes. In other programming, we engaged members who serve as experts in their fields to participate as panelists to discuss Human Resource topics such as benefits and recruiting strategies, and how to do business with entities such as the FBI and the City of Huntsville. We also hosted presentations that featured accomplished CEOs including Rey Almodóvar and Julie Schumacher, who shared their struggles and successes as they worked their way to the C-Suite.

      • 35 events
      • 795 tickets sold
      • 25 different presenters, representing 20 different companies
      • 22 different topics discussed

Upcoming C-Suite Speaker Series:

Upcoming classes:


Shop LOCAL-OPOLY encourages members of the community to shop local for a chance to win 100’s of dollars in gift cards to finish out their holiday shopping for the year!

LOCAL-OPOLY is promoted across Huntsville through the Chamber’s website and social media channels, and by the companies that are on the board. Patrons are reminded daily of those that make up and support the small business community as they look to their LOCAL-OPOLY board to shop and collect receipts for a chance to win during the holiday season!

In 2022:

      • Receipts totaling $5,295 were submitted to the Chamber
      • 1,000 people at the 2022 Small Business Awards received a SHOP LOCAL-OPOLY board
      • 25,085 people from the Chamber’s social media platforms were reached with over 600 comments, likes or shares


The Women’s Business Council supports the mission and vision of the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber by providing a platform to network, mentor, and develop leaders among the women in business in the North Alabama region. This is accomplished by hosting dynamic programming and unique networking opportunities throughout the year.

In 2022:

      • 6 events & 235 tickets sold
      • 16 woman-owned businesses and 15 different industries represented on the Council




Ashley Engles-Ross
Vice President, Small Business

Contact Small Business Team



The Small Business Department, in conjunction with the UAH Small Business Development Center & Procurement Technical Assistance Center, provides training in the form of workshops and seminars targeted toward new business owners and the small business community as a whole.