2005-08-04 / Front Page

New director, new location mark new start for Chamber

It’s a new day for the Washington Wilkes Chamber of Commerce – the organization is moving to a new home on The Square, there’s a new executive director with a reputation for making things happen, and it’s all focused on one goal: to help member businesses grow and thrive every way possible.

The Chamber board of directors Monday night asked board member Louise Maynard to serve as executive director and voted to move the Chamber of Commerce immediately into the new visitors’ center on the east side of The Square, which Mrs. Maynard recently purchased and renovated. She agreed to serve in the position until January 1, and without pay.

As a part of the Chamber’s Quarterly Breakfast on Wednesday, August 17, Georgia Senator Jim Whitehead will cut the ribbon on the Chamber’s new home.

The breakfast will feature a question and-answer session with Sen. Whitehead. Space is limited for the 8 a.m. breakfast, so everyone attending should RSVP by August 12 by calling the Chamber at 678-2013. Watchmakers will cater the breakfast at the Woman’s Club, making it a deal at only $10.

The move to The Square is seen by Chamber members as “a terrific idea,” and “the only solution that makes sense.” Chamber members, especially downtown merchants, have been disappointed by bureaucratic slowness and missed entrepreneurial opportunities that the overworked and underfunded Chamber staff has dealt with over the past few years.

And, although membership in the Chamber has declined over the past few years, most members – especially merchants – say they want to be part of a solid, working Chamber, knowing that an effective Chamber of Commerce is vital to the growth of industry, trade, and tourism in the area.

Mrs. Maynard has a proven track record of effective leadership and hard work, most recently leading the Spring Tour of Homes to new heights of popularity and attendance.

“This is a good step,” said one merchant. “Louise gets things done.”

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