The Jackson County Area Chamber of Commerce’s leadership void is about to get much bigger.
Having searched for a new president without success since Shane Short resigned Aug. 15, 2012, the chamber is about to lose its director of economic development. Courtney Bernardi announced her resignation last week, effective April 12. She is reportedly taking a similar job in Newton County.
Meanwhile, the chamber’s search committee for the position of president is “officially disbanded,” chairman Mark Valentine revealed last Friday as his board of directors met, leaving the chamber’s executive committee searching for an interim president and trying to create a new search committee.
Valentine said the chamber intends to combine the roles of the director of economic development and the president so as to be able to offer candidates more money.
“One of the challenges in the search has been being able to offer a competitive salary,” Valentine said. “One opportunity of this (Bernardi’s resignation) is we can take the two salaries, pull them together… to make us more competitive in the marketplace.”
Throughout the chamber’s 40-year history, the president has typically led the economic development effort. That situation changed only when Bernardi was hired in 2010 and the position of director of economic development was created.
For the full story, see the March 20 edition of The Commerce News.
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