Member News 4/6

Member News

  • Amgen Foundation will be donating $300,000 to United Way Suncoast and the Hillsborough Education Foundation for COVID-19 efforts.
  • BRP Group, Inc. announced that Baldwin Krystyn Sherman Partners, LLC has acquired substantially all assets of Insurance Risk Partners, LLC (“IRP”), an Oklahoma City-based provider of P&C insurance and additional consulting services.
  • DACCO Behavioral Health, Inc. appoints Deanna Obregon to Chief Executive Officer.
  • IBERIABANK is pleased to announce the naming of Joseph (Joe) Bryan, III, Vice President and 4th Street Branch Manager in St. Petersburg, and Aaron Loehr, Vice President and East Lake Branch Manager in Oldsmar.

Understanding the COVID-19 Stimulus Package Panelists

The four panelists for the Understanding the COVID-19 Stimulus Package webinar are Steve Bernstein, Bill Goede, David Jolly and Rita Lowman.

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Steve Bernstein is the managing partner at Fisher Phillips Tampa Office and co-chairs the firm’s Labor Relations practice group. Steve maintains a traditional labor practice in which he represents employers throughout the United States in both state and federal courts, as well as before the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), and other state and federal agencies.

Bill Goede is Bank of America’s Tampa Bay Market President, he is also the Business Banking Market Executive for the Greater Tampa Bay Market. In the Tampa Bay community, Bill serves locally on the board of trustees for the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, Homeless Emergency project, the Tampa Bay Chamber, the University of Tampa, and Starting Right Now.

David Jolly is Executive Vice President of Shumaker Advisors Florida, a public affairs and government relations firm affiliated with Shumaker Loop & Kendrick LLP. Jolly previously served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2014 – 2017, representing Florida’s 13th Congressional District. A student of the institution, Jolly has held virtually every position in Congress, from intern to Member, and has worked outside the Congress as an attorney and political consultant, as well as in specialty finance.

Rita Lowman, President of Pilot Bank, is a 40+ year banker who has blazed trails for the industry throughout her career. Her career highlights include managing 22 acquisitions in her career including the NationsBank/Barnett acquisition in 1997. Rita also served NationsBank/Bank of America as the State Administration Executive. She also played an integral part as COO of C1 Bank as the company went public in 2014 and selling to Bank of the Ozarks in 2015. Rita also serves on the Community Council and Government Relations Council of the American Bankers Association.

Zoom Technology

The Tampa Bay Chamber selected Zoom as its video conferencing and collaboration platform in 2019. To protect the health of its staff, members, and the public during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chamber has “gone virtual” and is conducting its business and meetings via video conferencing. This has meant that many members have been asked to join “Zoom Meetings.” Some recent articles and social media posts have highlighted instances of trolling or “Zoombombing” during some Zoom meetings – note, this has not happened with a Chamber meeting.

Many of these situations have been caused by hosts who have not used many of the privacy and security controls offered by the platform, such as publicly posting “open” Zoom meeting links on social media without meeting passwords and with screensharing enabled by default. Posting an open meeting invitation on social media is never recommended because unintended guests could arrive.

Zoom has several settings and configurations to ensure meeting privacy and security such as encryption, password protection, waiting rooms, and meeting locks. The simplest way to protect a meeting is not to share the ID outside of the intended group you wish to have a meeting with. A secondary measure is to always use a random meeting ID and not your PMI or Personal Meeting ID for meetings. A tertiary protection step would be to password protect the meeting. This would help insure there are no issues with unwanted users “bombarding” meetings.

Zoom is designed for ease of use and during this time of social distancing and shelter-in-place/safer at home orders, remote working has seen substantial growth in use for personal, business, and educational use. As such, we wanted to provide a few resources from Zoom to help our members in their use of the platform for chamber meetings, as well as any of their personal or professional use.

How to Keep the Party Crashers from Crashing Your Zoom Event
March 20, 2020 by Zoom

Zoom Security White Paper

Zoom Tutorials


Christopher Rogers
SVP, Deputy CIO & Global Security Officer

The CARES Act Fact Sheet

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides robust funding streams, negotiated by House and Senate Democrats, to assist local governments and nonprofits in responding to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Disaster Relief Fund – $45 billion will support a broad array of state and local emergency response efforts related to the coronavirus pandemic.

Small Business

Paycheck Protection Program – $350 billion in funding (included in Division A of the bill) for a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that will provide small businesses and other entities with zero-fee loans of up to $10 million, with up to 8 weeks of average payroll and other costs forgiven if the business retains its employees and their salary levels. (For additional details, refer to the House Committee on Small Business.)

Emergency Economic Injury Grants – $10 billion in funding (included in Division A of the bill) for a provision to provide an advance of $10,000 to small businesses and nonprofits that apply for an SBA economic injury disaster loan (EIDL) within three days of applying for the loan. (For additional details, refer to the House Committee on Small Business.)

Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) – $562 million to ensure that SBA has the resources to provide EIDL to businesses that need financial support.

Debt Relief for Existing and New SBA Borrowers – $17 billion in funding (included in Division A of the bill) for a provision to provide immediate relief to small businesses with standard SBA 7(a), 504, or microloans, among other relief for small business borrowers. (For additional details, refer to the House Committee on Small Business.)

Resources for Business Counseling Services – $275 million in grants (included in Division A of the bill) to Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs), Women’s Business Centers (WBCs), as well as the Minority Business Development Agency’s Business Centers (MBDCs), to provide mentorship, guidance and expertise to small businesses. (For additional details, refer to the House Committee on Small Business.)

NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Program – $50 million to enable non-profit MEP centers across the country to assist small and medium-sized manufacturers hit by coronavirus and the economic downturn.

Health Care  Reimbursement to Hospitals and Healthcare Providers – $100 billion to ensure healthcare providers continue to receive the support they need for COVID-19 related expenses and lost revenue.

HSSEF, Hospital Preparedness – Not less than $250 million to improve the capacity of healthcare facilities to respond to medical events.

PHSSEF, Strategic National Stockpile – $16 billion to procure personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other medical supplies for federal and state response efforts.

CDC state and local public health – $1.5 billion will help states, locals, territories, and tribes conduct vital public health activities related to preparedness and response.

Community Health Centers – $1.3 billion (included in Division A of the bill) for supplemental grants to health clinics to provide expanded health care services. (For additional details, refer to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.)

Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program – $90 million for supplemental grants to HIV/AIDS clinics.

Rural Hospitals – $150 million for grants to bolster capacity to respond to increased demand at rural hospitals.

Telehealth – $15 million for supplemental grants to existing grantees to expand telemedicine capacity.

Public Health Data Surveillance and Infrastructure Modernization – $500 million to build and modernize state and local public health data infrastructure.

SAMHSA Emergency Response Grant – $100 million in flexible funding to address mental health, substance use disorders, and provide resources and support to youth and the homeless during the pandemic.

Economic Development Economic Development Administration (EDA) – $1.5 billion for economic adjustment assistance, to be competitively awarded across the country, with states, local governments, tribes, economic development districts, universities, and other nonprofits eligible to apply.

Community Development Block Grant – $5 billion in flexible funding to state and local governments for public services, economic development and expansion of community facilities to respond to coronavirus.

Reconnect Broadband Grants – $100 million to state and local governments, federally-recognized tribes, and non-profits to fund the cost of construction, improvement or acquisition of facilities, and equipment needed to provide broadband in rural areas.

First Responders Emergency Management Performance Grant Program – $100 million will support efforts of state and local emergency managers to maintain, restore, and sustain food, water, shelter, healthcare, and transportation supply chains.

Assistance to Firefighter Grant Program – $100 million will support the acquisition of and reimbursement for personal protective equipment for firefighters and associated emergency response personnel.

Byrne Justice Assistance Grants – $850 million in criminal justice funding assistance to states and units of local government.

Legal Services Corporation – $50 million for additional assistance to non-profit legal aid programs across the country, to enable them to provide civil legal assistance to low-income persons affected by coronavirus and the economic downturn.

Transportation Grants-in-Aid to Airports – $10 billion will help publicly-owned commercial airports meet ongoing needs, continue current projects, and assist with operating costs.

Transit Infrastructure Grants – $25 billion will help transit operators protect health and safety and maintain transit service.  Recipients are transit agencies, awarded via formula.

Housing Tenant-Based Rental Assistance – $1.25 billion for public housing authorities to ensure that current tenants remain safely and stably housed and to address increased operational costs.

Public Housing Operating Fund – $685 million to help public housing authorities with increased operational costs related to coronavirus.

Native American Programs – $300 million for the Native American Housing Block Grant and Indian Community Development Block Grant programs, supporting Tribal governments and Tribally Designated Housing Entities.

Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS – $65 million state and local governments to maintain rental assistance and enhance services for persons living with HIV/AIDS.

Homeless Assistance Grants – $4 billion in funding to state and local governments to support additional homeless assistance, as well as eviction and homelessness prevention activities.


Education State Fiscal Stabilization Fund – $30.75 billion, including $13.5 billion for local education agencies for K-12 needs and costs.

Project SERV – $100 million to help restore the learning environment at K-12 schools and universities disrupted by coronavirus.

Child Care and Development Block Grants – $3.5 billion will help child care programs pay staff, offer alternative child care options for facilities temporarily closed, and provide emergency staffing needs to support first responders and health care workers with access to child care while they respond to the pandemic.

Head Start – $750 million to support staff and students throughout closures, clean and sanitize facilities, and support summer school operations in communities as they recover.

Institute of Museum and Library Services – $50 million to provide funding to libraries and museums for activities associated with coronavirus prevention, preparation, and response, including technology costs.

Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grants – $25 million to state and local governments, federally-recognized tribes, and non-profits to fund capital assets, instructional programming, and technical assistance.

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) – $75 million for grants to support the general operations of recipients, of which 60% will be through direct competitive grants and 40% will be through states.

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) – $75 million for grants to support the general operations of recipients, of which 60% will be through direct competitive grants and 40% will be through states.

Food Security Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) – $450 million to local agencies selected by states, such as food banks, and to community action agencies to help provide low-income Americans, including seniors, with emergency food assistance at no cost.   Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR) – $100 million to provide USDA Foods to income-eligible households living on Indian reservations, and to American Indian households residing in approved areas near reservations and in Oklahoma.

Social Services Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) – $900 million will help lower-income households heat and cool their homes.

Community Service Block Grants – $1 billion will help communities address increasing unemployment and economic disruption, including providing housing and utility assistance, health services, and emergency support services.

Family Violence Prevention and Services – $45 million will support families dealing with family and domestic violence through shelter and supportive services.

Child Welfare Services – $45 million to protect and support at-risk children and families.

Corporation for Public Broadcasting – $75 million to provide stabilization funding for public radio and TV stations.


State of Business with COVID-19 Panelists

The four panelists for the State of Business with COVID-19 Webinar are Brian Butler, Terin Cremer, Esq., Carole Post, and Eileen Rodriguez.


Brian Butler is President and CEO of Vistra Communications, an integrated Marketing, Communications and Consulting agency with a broad range of clients. Prior to founding Vistra, Brian served as a Director of Bio-Defense Policy on the Homeland Security Council in the White House, where he co-authored the National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza Implementation Plan.

Terin Cremer, Esq. is the managing partner at Barbas Cremer, PLLC, a boutique employment and business law firm. She works with businesses across the country on issues related to human resources and client contracting. In addition to her work in the private practice of law, Terin is an adjunct professor for Florida State University’s College of law. She is also a mayoral appointee to the City of Tampa’s Civil Service Board where she serves as an administrative judge resolving City of Tampa employment disputes.

Carole Post is the City of Tampa’s Administrator for Development and Economic Opportunity which oversees Development and Construction Services, Real Estate, Affordable Housing, Historic Preservation, and the Convention Center. Carole recently returned to Florida after nearly 20 years in New York City, including 10 years with the City of New York where she led many of the City’s building recovery efforts following 9/11. In the coming months, Carole and her teams will work closely with Tampa’s business and economic sectors to help revitalize the City following the Coronavirus crisis.

Eileen Rodriguez is the Regional Director of the Florida Small Business Development Center at USF, she is responsible for policy development, strategic planning, human resources management, and the administrative oversight of a $3.1 million budget. She has been at the SBDC for 22 years and began working with the Florida SBDC at University of South Florida in 1997, providing one-on-one confidential consulting and teaching seminars in English and Spanish in the areas of starting a small business, international trade, and women and minority certification. Before joining the FSBDC at USF, she also owned her own business.

First Community Collection Site Open at Raymond James Stadium

Information provided from Sandy Murman, County Commissioner, District 1

To help ensure the health and wellness of our community, Hillsborough County, working with its community partners Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County, BayCare, Tampa General Hospital, AdventHealth, HCA Healthcare – West Florida Division, and the City of Tampa, is offering a drive-through COVID-19 coronavirus testing site for symptomatic residents.

The first Community Collection site opened at Raymond James Stadium at 8:00am on Wednesday, March 25th, located at 4201 N. Dale Mabry Hwy., to help expedite testing for COVID-19 coronavirus in symptomatic patients that have pre-registered through Hillsborough County’s call center. The drive-thru testing site will be open Wednesday -Saturday, from 8 AM to 2 PM or while supplies last. The site is in the parking lot south of the stadium bordered by Tom McEwen Blvd. on the north, Dale Mabry Hwy. to the west, and Himes Ave. to the east. Vehicles should enter from Dale Mabry Hwy. or Himes Ave. Entry will be marked with signage.

The site will be staffed by health care professionals in medical protective gear who are trained to test for COVID-19 coronavirus. Directional signage and law enforcement will help residents through the testing site in an orderly fashion.

The drive-through testing site will remain operational as long as there is a supply of collection kits available. At this time, approximately 200 tests are expected to be completed per day.

Pre-Screening and Pre-Registration Are Required:

  • Residents may get tested if they have been pre-screened and meet testing guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and the Florida Department of Health.
  • Residents also must be pre-registered through the Hillsborough County Customer Service Center at (813) 272-5900. The call center is augmented with health care staff Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM.
  • Persons who do not have a designated primary care physician or are uninsured are eligible for pre-screening and pre-registration through the call center.

What to Bring:

  • You must arrive in a personal vehicle. Due to the increased risk of contamination as well as current shortages of personal protective equipment, walk-ups are not permitted at this time.
  • Each person to be tested must be seated next to a working window.
  • Limit vehicle passengers to those needing a test.
  • Have a photo ID for all persons being tested with name, date of birth and photo (can be Florida driver’s license, state-issued ID, or passport).
  • Bring a printed copy of the testing confirmation email from the Hillsborough County Customer Service Center. Having this form with you will expedite the process.
  • Residents that are unable to print their confirmation number can provide a screen shot on their phone.
  • You will be asked to provide the following information:
    1. Full name
    2. Current address (where you are staying)
    3. Best phone number to reach you in order to receive test results

What to Expect:

  • You will be greeted by a health care provider in personal protective gear who will give you instructions.
  • You will be given a tissue to blow your nose. You will need to keep the tissue to dispose on your own.
  • A soft swab will be inserted deep into your nose to get the necessary sample. This may be slightly uncomfortable, but the test is quick and should take less than a minute.
  • Test results are not immediate. It may take several days. After the test, you will be given information on what to do while you await the results.
  • You will receive test results via the telephone number you gave at the time of pre-screening.

Persons who are experiencing a medical emergency should dial 9-1-1 immediately.

The opening of the testing site was unanimously approved by the Hillsborough County Emergency Policy Group (EPG) on Monday. The Hillsborough County Emergency Policy Group is comprised of three County Commissioners, the mayors from the cities of Plant City, Tampa, and Temple Terrace, the Sheriff, and Chairman of the School Board. Authority is granted by Article 8 of the Florida Constitution, Section 125.66 and Chapter 252, Florida Statutes. Hillsborough County enacted Hillsborough County Code of Ordinances and Laws Chapter 22, Article II, Sections 22-23 in order to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the County’s residents during declared emergencies.

Member News & Resources

Member News & Resources

On March 18, 2020 President Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the Act) into law. The Act requires employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide Emergency Paid Sick Leave and partially paid leave after 10 days under the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Act. The Act will be come effective April 2, 2020 and remain in effect until December 31, 2020.

Health & Family Assistance

  • BayCare is now offering limited drive thru testing for COVID-19. Click here to find a testing center.
  • Hillsborough County Schools are providing food for students during extended off time with free breakfast and lunch offered at several sites across the district. Beginning Monday, March 23rd at 9:00am, each location will start serving food to those 18 years old and younger. See the full list of locations here.
  • OneBlood is experiencing rapid cancellations of blood drives. They need continued support to help ensure a ready blood supply. The FDA has stated that COVID-19 does not pose any known risk to blood donors during the donation process or from attending blood drives. OneBlood Donation safety protocols have been increased. If you have any questions or would like to schedule a blood drive, please reach out to Jaime Mueller.
  • Phoenix House Florida continues to admit new patients and will continue to remain open while providing the highest quality care. They will continue to monitor the situation closely and share updates as they develop on their company website.
  • The Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Aspire Health is providing services to veterans, their families, and the families of Active Duty, National Guard, and Reserves, including spouse or partner, children, parents, siblings, caregivers and others regardless of discharge status, role while in uniform and combat experience. They are providing behavioral healthcare services and case management resources, childcare, transportation and Telehealth services. Please call 813-542-5513.
  • Trulieve COVID-19 resources for patients.


  • The Center for Cyber Safety and Education is providing free Garfield eLearning for every child for the next 30 days. Access the free Garfield eLearning here.
  • Charter will offer free Spectrum broadband and WiFi ccess for 60 days to households with K12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription at any service level up to 100 Mbps. To enroll please call 1-844-488-8395. Installation fees will be waived for new student households.
  • Girl Scouts of West Central Florida introduced Girl Scouts at Home – a virtual programming option available to all families through their website. It’s a collection of online programs, activities and challenges designed to keep girls engaged in the Girl Scout Leadership Experience during this time.
  • The Glazer Children’s Museum has launched GCM at Home, a new section of its website that features activities to keep families entertained and learning while schools are closed.
  • Keiser University is recruiting professionals to record short videos for their students and alumni on skills employers look for, urgent hiring needs and interviewing tips. Please reach out to Elease Phillips for more information.

Professional Development & Assistance

  • B2 Communications is offering crisis communication services/coaching and sharing 6 tips for communications during COVID-19.
  • Catalyst – A Marketing Company is allocating 25 hours weekly via Zoom for pro-bono marketing assistance and support during April and May. Click here to book a time.
  • City of Tampa is hosting a tele-townhall with Tampa City Councilman Luis Viera to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on small business owners on Thursday, March 26th at 1:00pm.
  • The Community Foundation of Tampa Bay has launched the Tampa Bay Rapid Response Fund to support area nonprofits and the people they serve during the COVID-19 pandemic. Money from the fund will be granted strategically to community-based organizations that are facing huge demand or significant service and financial interruptions during this time. If you are a nonprofit that wants to report your needs, please email
  • CROOW has advanced workspaces and tools for remote teams to enable creative, marketing, design, and development collaboration. CROOW premium access for individuals and teams of up to 25 is free with the code Remote Collaboration. Just register for free at and upgrade for free through April 30, 2020 with upgraded access complimentary for 6 months. Code: RemoteCollaboration Questions:
  • Dale Carnegie Training is offering a complimentary webinar, Becoming a Digital Leader: How to Lead, Communicate, and Hold Your Team Accountable in a Virtual Environment. They will teach powerful techniques to get your virtual team up and running. The date is March 31st at 10:00 am. Register for the session here.
  • Evolution Consulting is helping companies with their telecommunications infrastructure and expense management. They also enable employers to equip their employees for teleworking and set up business continuity plans. If you need assistance please reach out to Barry Silberstein.
  • Insperity has a variety of COVID-19 resource posts available on their blog.
  • LinkedIn Local is offering a virtual networking session on March 24th from 5:30 pm – 8:00 pm. You can register via Eventbrite here.
  • Phelps Dunbar is providing information regarding legal issues that are facing businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. We have one central Client Resource Center for all data including cyber security, shipping regulations, immigration issues, labor & employment issues, teleheath, tax consequences, bankruptcy, etc.
  • Rumberger Kirk & Caldwell PA has provided a guide for employers regarding COVID-19.
  • Vartai Security is providing a 50% discount off external network security review to assist with companies working from home. Please reach out to Ben Rollin for more information.
  • Vector Solutions has launched a complimentary coronavirus (COVID-19) video microcourse to help you and your loved ones stay safe and healthy. Available now, this course features critical information about the coronavirus.


  • Apple Spice Box Lunch Delivery and Corporate Catering is offering 20% off until April 15th to all Tampa Bay Chamber members. In addition, you get a free loaf of freshly baked bread with 8oz. of cinnamon-honey butter on orders of $50 or more. Call 813-373-5359 or email Julie to order.
  • Bavaro’s is offering large servings of homemade pasta sauce along with fresh pasta for takeout orders, call to order 813-868-4440.
  • Feeding Tampa Bay
  • Mise en Place is offering delivery and restaurant or curbside hours from 11:30am to 9:00pm with dinner on premise still starting at 5:00 pm Wednesday through Saturday. In restaurant dining for lunch is suspended until further notice.
  • Outback Steakhouse is doing curbside takeway and free delivery now through April 30th.
  • The Tampa Bay Times shared a list of the current Tampa Bay area restaurants that have closed or are offering takeout during social distancing.
  • Whiskey Cake Kitchen & Bar is offering Quarantine Kits. Call 813-535-9955 to order, call early as supply is limited.
    • $65 Original Kit:
      • 2 Ribeyes
      • 4 Burgers
      • 2 Brined/Marinated Chickens
      • 12 Eggs
      • 1 Gallon Milk
      • 1 Lb. Butter
      • 4 Oranges (substituted based on supply)
      • 2 Rolls of Toilet Paper
      • *Add 4 pieces of Whisey Cake for $20*
    • $55 Spring Break Edition:
      • 4 Short Ribs
      • 2 Brined/Marinated Whole Chickens
      • 2 Lbs. Bacon
      • 2 Lbs. Cream Cheese
      • Elbow Pasta
      • Mac N’ Cheese Sauce
      • Brussels Sprouts (substituted based on supply)
      • 4 Oranges (substituted based on supply)
      • 1 Lb. Butter
      • 4 Pieces of Whiskey Cake
  • Uber Eats has waived their delivery fees for over 100,000 independent restaurants across the US and Canada. They are working with local governments to provide more than 300,000 free meals to first responders and healthcare workers.


  • Aussie Pet Mobile is still operating and following the guidelines of the CDC, the WHO, and other public health agencies.
  • Bunker Labs Tampa is now accepting applications for the Veterans in Residence until April 28th.
  • Camaraderie Foundation is hosting a “non-event event” called “No Show Extravaganza” where they are taking a humorous approach to asking people to consider making a gift to support.
  • Foto Bohemia is offering significant portrait and event discounts to help support Tampa Bay Chamber members. They are offering 50% off all branding sessions and 30% off any new April through September corporate events.
  • Image360-North Tampa is offering 50% off all products and services and free delivery.
  • Levy Recognition’s employee engagement platform, Elevate, is a place where teams can come together with enthusiasm, empathy, and hope during this time of uncertainty. Learn more at
  • Tampa Electric and TECO Peoples Gas are donating $1 million to support Floridians in the communities they serve who have lost their jobs or substantial income as a result of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
  • Verizon is committed to helping small businesses and consumers and is prepared to serve customers during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • ZooTampa is launching a Corporate Support Initiative to assist with their emergency operating fund.