The Crossville-Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce is launching its search for a new president/CEO and hopes to have resumes and applications to review in the next month.

“We can see what we get in and make decisions on that,” said interim President David Rutherford. “This will give us a chance to see what’s out there as far as competence and desire to work in a small community. And it will give us a good handle on the salary expectations.”

The position announcement went out June 11, with a deadline of July 12 for applications to be returned to the executive committee. 

The board is seeking candidate with a minimum of 10 years’ experience in Chamber or nonprofit management with at least a bachelor’s degree. The position includes working with the board of directors and stakeholders to develop short- and long-term strategies and programs to serve the interests of the business community; oversee day-to-day management of the Chamber and Visitors Center; serve as a public advocate for the business community; maintain the community’s leading position in tourism and retiree recruitment; strengthen programs in support of business retention, economic development and workforce development; and establish relationships with local governments and community groups through the Horizon Initiative’s cooperative efforts. 

The posting asks candidates to describe their time management and project management processes to ensure timely completion and ongoing communication; functions or events handled from concept through execution, with details on the challenges of the project, budget, fundraising and sponsorship; leadership style and approach to party engagement; and their vision for the Chamber moving forward. 

Applicants should provide their resume, cover letter, question answers and salary requirements to info@crossville-chamber.com, with President’s Position in the subject line; mail to Crossville-Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce, Executive Committee, P.O. Box 453, Crossville, TN 38557; or deliver to 34 S. Main St., Crossville, TN 38555.

Rutherford said the executive committee had contacted individuals who were interested in serving on a search committee. 

“As we go through this process, we need to have as much community buy-in as possible,” Rutherford said. “We need folks in the community, Chamber members or former Chamber members, to look at this as a new day.”

Rutherford hopes to have a new president on board before the end of the year. 

“I’m pretty confident we’re going to get someone who is able to take the organization and move it forward,” he said.

The board voted to defer implementation of a tiered dues structure, set to begin July 1, until no earlier than July 1, 2020.

“We need to do some bridge building and fence mending,” Rutherford said. “And when we’re down on membership, we don’t need to ask people to pay more. If we do our job like we’re supposed to, next year, you can put tiered dues in place.”

In other business, the Chamber reviewed the new marketing materials promoting the industrial building pad at Interchange Business Park.

Ashley DeRossett, Chamber vice president, said the materials would be sent to site selection entities. It’s also been provided to a representative from the Upper Cumberland Development District who is attending a summit in Washington, DC, to share with prospects at that event.

“This is already being used,” DeRossett said.

She said Rutherford had been combing through a database of possible targeted industries and identifying companies that would be a good match for the community.

“We’ll be cold calling and mailing them information,” she said.

The board also voted to confirm new board members to two-year terms. Joining the Chamber’s Board of Directors in July will be Bill Atkinson, Hillary Jackson, Mary Waldo, with Josh Stone and Bryce McDonald returning.

“I’m pretty excited about stepping in next month,” said R.J. Crawford, who will lead the board as chairman next year. The board also voted to confirm Asa Reese to fill a vacant two-year term.

Stone will serve as vice chairman with Vickie Upchurch as the immediate past chairman. Bob Weber will continue as the treasurer.

Cravens also named the following individuals to lead Chamber committees:

•Steve Douglas, public policy

•Matt Dukes, economic development

•Rebecca Wood, workforce development

•Bryce McDonald, tourism and retiree recruitment

•Glenn McDonald, membership development

Cumberland County Mayor Allen Foster, Crossville Mayor James Mayberry and Crossville City Manger Greg Wood serve as non-voting members of the board.

“It’s a good group coming in to the executive board,” Crawford said. “It should be a productive year.”

*This story has been updated to reflect incoming Chamber chairman's name as R.J. Crawford, not Cravens. 

Heather Mullinix is editor of the Crossville Chronicle. She covers schools and education in Cumberland County. She may be reached at hmullinix@crossville-chronicle.com.