The Tennessee Manufacturers Association started in 1912, when 150 industrialists boarded a train in Chattanooga to head to Nashville. They were on a mission and it involved what they considered to be “unfair taxes”. They were led by a 20-piece brass band and made stops along the railroad route to pick up other businessmen.

They arrived in Nashville to find that trains from the other Grand Divisions of the state were here, bearing business leaders who all shared the same common purpose: create an organization to represent interests of the state’s businesses.

It was the birth of the ancestor of the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry, and it was a recognition that, no matter where you are located in the great state of Tennessee, matters of public policy require a cooperative effort and a single unified voice.

TMA’s and the Tennessee Chamber’s role remains a simple, but critical, one – to represent the interests of our state’s job creators in matters of public policy and to build a statewide network and coalition of businesses and industries that speak out collectively on matters of interest.