Business

New Abbotsford chamber president sees opportunity

Patrick Giesbrecht is the new president of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce. - JOHN VAN PUTTEN
Patrick Giesbrecht is the new president of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce.
— image credit: JOHN VAN PUTTEN

A winner of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce’s new business of the year Business Excellence Award is the new chamber president.

Patrick Giesbrecht took over the position on Wednesday from outgoing president Pat Sapielak.

Giesbrecht started the business Pacific North Advertising, and for which he won new business of the year in 2005. He sold the business in 2007, and now operates Pacific North Marketing.

Giesbrecht, a former Abbotsford council candidate, first got involved with the chamber in 2006 when he worked with the government affairs committee. He got a seat on the board four years ago.

Unlike his predecessors, Giesbrecht will serve a two-year term, instead of one.

“I really thing it gives me a chance to get something done,” said Giesbrecht.

“I want to continue to grow relationships between our group and other stakeholder groups in the community.”

Giesbrecht also embraces the chamber’s role as advocate for local businesses, and through the “Competitive Abbotsford” agenda, the group will work to reduce the amount of taxation and red tape local businesses face. He said Abbotsford is competing for business on a global scale.

Giesbrecht was born and raised here, and now he and wife Ellie are raising their two young sons here.

Both pairs of his grandparents moved to Abbotsford – one in 1956 and the other in 1964. Both became poultry farmers, and enjoyed success.

“They moved here because of opportunity,” he said. “What’s really going to push this community forward is if we continue to have opportunity here.”

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