Small-Town Strong

Oregon Frontier Chamber of Commerce

The Oregon Frontier Chamber unites Gilliam, Wheeler, and Sherman Counties in their efforts to build strong and diverse small-town economies. By combining their efforts, they make each other stronger.

Strength in Numbers

Sunset in eastern Oregon

If you’ve ever visited the Painted Hills, fished on the John Day River, or headed east in search of fossils, you’ve very likely seen many of the small towns that populate northeastern Oregon—towns like Mitchell, Condon, Fossil or Sprague. With populations that rarely exceed 1,000 people, it would be difficult for these small towns to muster enough resources to start their own chambers of commerce to promote local entrepreneurs and small businesses—but that doesn’t mean the interest isn’t there — or the talent!

Sherman, Gilliam, and Wheeler Counties have united to form the Oregon Frontier Chamber of Commerce, bringing together resources from eleven small towns to strengthen them all. Rural Opportunity Initiative grants from Business Oregon (and funded by Oregon Lottery dollars) have helped the Chamber to finance these efforts. The goal? To support entrepreneurship for local artisans, makers, creators, and food producers along with Main Street businesses and revitalization. Funds also help support community events, enhancing community livability.

Frontier Chamber-related photos by K’Lynn Lane.

K'Lynn Lane, Oregon Frontier Chamber of Commerce
This program is among the most valuable and enriching programs ever to develop in our region. We are truly stronger when we work together.
— K’Lynn Lane, Oregon Frontier Chamber Executive Director Oregon Frontier Chamber
Two men sit on a bench along Main Street

The Rural Opportunity Initiative (ROI)

ROI Grants: “Business Oregon’s strategic effort to empower rural communities to support entrepreneurs and small business growth through financial support, innovative partnerships, network expansion and access to business development resources.”

Business Oregon distributes Lottery funds to projects that fuel business development across Oregon. Learn more about their efforts in rural Oregon and across the state!

Condon is a great example of how you evolve and you want things to grow. A little bit of potential and all of a sudden it’s contagious!
— Chiyanna Brooks, Rural Community Ambassador & Co.Starters Core Graduate
Local products for sale at a farmers' market.

Even More Oregon Investment

Learn how similar ROI efforts are changing the farm-and-food landscape in Oregon’s Applegate Valley. Your lottery play helps support good things in Oregon!

Learn More