A full-blooded Tooelean, the new chairman of the Tooele County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism board of directors is fervent about building local business and community spirit.
Tyson Hamilton — born and raised in Tooele County and a graduate of Tooele High School — was installed as the chairman of the Tooele County Chamber of Commerce’s board of directors at the chamber’s recognition dinner in January.
Hamilton has owned and operated Another Man’s Treasure, an antique shop in Tooele City since April 2015. For four years Hamilton has dealt in vintage, antique and collectible items out of his shop at 14 W. Vine Street.
Prior to opening his own store, Hamilton spent eight years in Kennecott Utah Copper’s mines on the other side of the Oquirrh Mountains as a truck driver and supervisor.
Between the often baseball cap covered top of his head and his full beard, Hamilton’s eyes light up when he talks about the chamber’s “Shop Local” campaign.
“Shop Local” was launched last year by the chamber while Hamilton was the first-vice chairman of the chamber board.
“We’re going full out with our Shop Local campaign to educate the public and businesses about the value of shopping local,” Hamilton said. “When you spend $100 at a local business, $68 of that stays in our community. It helps pay for parks, police, and fire fighting, as well as building our local businesses so they can contribute to our community.
“You might find a better price driving into Salt Lake or West Valley cities, but you will pay for it eventually,” he said.
Local businesses and government agencies are also targets of the chamber’s “Buy Local” campaign, according to Hamilton.
“When businesses or local governments need tires for their cars or other supplies, they need to look for a local business,” Hamilton said.
The chamber’s “Shop Local” campaign uses a variety of media to educate Tooele County citizens not only about the value of shopping local, but also the range of things available in the county, according to Hamilton.
“A lot of people don’t know what we have available right here in the county,” he said. “So they drive right by it on their way into Salt Lake.”
The Tooele County Chamber of Commerce is also revved up to support “Tooele Valley — So much, so close,” the County’s new branding and tourism promotion effort, according to Hamilton.
“We do have ‘and Tourism’ as part of our name,” he said. “We will be meeting with the county and their tourism experts to see how we can support their plans.”
Hamilton said tourism is important to local businesses.
“Tourists eat, sleep and shop here, and then they leave, having spent money at our local businesses,” Hamilton said. “With the county’s new direction this is a pivotal time for Tooele County.”
The chamber is also working on obtaining recognition by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501c(3) charitable organization so it will be eligible to directly apply for and receive grants to support small businesses, tourism, and the chamber’s growth, Hamilton said.
Hamilton also touted the chamber’s Women In Business program that includes a monthly meeting with a guest speaker and training as one of the chamber’s new successful programs.
When it comes to the entire county, Hamilton is excited about building community spirit and unity.
“We may agree or disagree with each other,” Hamilton said. “But we have to come together and do what is best for our community, and that may involve compromise and setting aside personal differences and feelings.”
Hamilton recalls the Tooele City that he grew up in.
“On Friday night everybody was at the football game supporting their community,” he said. “It was a big turn out. It was a big community event and you could feel the energy of everybody being there together. That’s the kind of feeling and spirit I want to build back up in our community today.”