Clinton Chamber seeks new exec director
CLINTON — Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce is seeking a part-time executive director, with long-time executive director Jackie Walters planning to step down.
The executive director is responsible for the overall management of the chamber, which includes overseeing Clinton’s seasonal Farmers Market held each year at the Village Green, as well as other seasonal events to include the annual Shoppers’ Stroll & Holiday Parade that traditionally takes place the weekend following Thanksgiving. The chamber is currently accepting applications to fill the position.
Walters began her position as executive director of the chamber back in September 2015, after she and her family moved to Clinton from Westfield, N.J. in 2014. Her daughter and son were going into sixth and fourth grade at the time they became Clinton residents, and working part-time for the chamber was “a good family fit.”
“I worked for the chamber of commerce down in Westfield, N.J., so that’s what prompted me to apply to the Clinton Chamber,” Walters recalled. “I wasn’t looking for something full-time, and the position was a great fit for its flexible hours so I could attend sporting events and other activities after school for my kids.”
As for becoming executive director of the Clinton Chamber, “I enjoyed meeting new people and going to all the business events,” she added.
Today, Walters said her daughter is in her second year of college and her son is going into his senior year of high school.
“So I thought it was a good time to make that transition, and I wanted to give the chamber a heads up so they had ample time to find someone to fill the position,” Walters said. “It’s a role that involves many different aspects and this way, I could even help train the person they hire.”
Walters reflected on some of her accomplishments as Clinton Chamber executive director. Some of those include the addition of the Jingle Bell Run during the annual Shoppers’ Stroll & Holiday Parade event and increased participation and attendance at Clinton Farmers Market.
“This year we’re celebrating our fifth year of the Jingle Bell Run — that’s become a big event that’s new,” she said. “When I took over the farmers market, in 2016 I introduced the acceptance of Food Stamps, which is supporting our vendors at our market. Tokens are given to shoppers at the market, instead of cash, so they can’t use them at any other market. There’s been a big increase for us at the market — especially with COVID, our numbers have significantly increased.”
Chamber membership has also increased since Walters has been at the helm, in addition to traffic on the chamber’s website.
“Membership itself — we had about 90 members when I started, and now we have 163 members,” she said. “Overall, the communication of events taking place and community events overall have increased as well. I wanted to make the chamber website a place people could go to in order to see what’s happening in Clinton. I share a lot of members’ events like the Kiwanis and their Christmas tree sale, the Lions Club garage sales, Country Pantry food distributions, ribbon cuttings, grand openings and sales — even Hamilton College reunions.”
According to the chamber announcement, the part-time executive director would also be responsible for managing chamber finances, maintaining the chamber website, developing “initiatives of value” to chamber members and furthering the chamber’s mission to support local business and build community.
The announcement said candidates should possess excellent oral and written communications skills, as well as strong customer services skills, and should be proficient in Microsoft Office, WordPress, QuickBooks, Constant Contact and social media.
Resumes should be sent to Clinton Chamber Board President Karen Ostinett at 108-110 Utica Road, Clinton, N.Y. 13323 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for applications is Wednesday, Aug. 10.
Walters said she hopes the new executive director will be accessible to their community and local businesses.
“It’s a very customer-service oriented position, so you need to work with everyone in the community, from non-profits to big organizations like Hamilton College, or even shoppers who come in for the stroll and farmers market,” Walter said. “They need to be open to work with everyone in the community, and be very accessible.”
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