The Montgomery County Hispanic Chamber relaunched itself with a new chair and board in place at a Sept. 28 event after pausing activity during the pandemic.

Following the relaunch, plans for events and resources for the business community are in the works, board Chair Miguel Lopez said in an interview.

“I’m very passionate about this,” said Lopez, who previously served as the executive director of Lone Star College’s Small Business Development Center, which dissolved in 2021. “The Hispanic growth, the impact of the Hispanic business community, the Hispanic community in general screams that an organization like this needs to be in place.”

In Montgomery County, the Hispanic community made up 26% of the total population in 2020, according to the Texas Demographic Center. By 2030, that figure is projected to rise to 30%.

“We definitely see the need for a go-to Hispanic business organization,” Lopez said. “And that’s what we are.”

Lopez said the chamber is not where it should be as it approaches its 20th anniversary in 2023.

“We’re not blaming previous boards or anything,” Lopez said. “It is what it is. We’re more concerned on what do we need to do to make sure we continue growing the way we should.”The chamber has a new logo and website and recently introduced its membership tiers, Lopez said.

“There’s a huge group of Hispanic business owners that keep in touch through WhatsApp; they have Facebook groups,” board Secretary Julio Resendez said. “But now they feel like they have a home with us.”

In addition, the Montgomery County Hispanic Chamber has plans to collaborate with other area chambers, such as the Conroe/Lake Conroe Chamber, for events and will try to balance providing events and resources in English and Spanish, Lopez said.

Of Montgomery County’s 12,797 employer establishments in 2020, 6% were Hispanic owned, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Census Business Builder.

Lopez also said the chamber is seeking to establish its own governmental relationships committee and offer leadership training.

Looking ahead, Resendez said he believes the chamber will have 500 members by the end of 2023.

“There’s so much that we want to do that I know we can offer,” Lopez said.