LS Chamber of Commerce reopens Executive
Controversy ensued after the previous Chamber president Laura Buell announced the posting of the executive director position and then resigned to apply for the job.
After giving the process a breather and redefining the application process, Anderson is ready to begin the search again.
“Because we have had a change in leadership and the election of new board members for 2007 who had not been involved in the earlier process, we thought it was best to take a step back and re-evaluate the process,” Anderson said.
Anderson said that several well-qualified candidates were among the original applicants, and that he was hopeful that they would re-apply when the job is re-posted.
“The Lake Stevens Chamber is an important institution that many people before me have volunteered countless hours to help build,” Anderson said, “The last thing I wanted to do was rubber-stamp the process for the sake of getting something done.”
The topic of a Chamber Executive Director was originally broached in the Dec. 6 Journal. The Journal reported that Chamber President Laura Buell was resigning to pursue the full-time paid position. Vice President Melody Sedy also resigned at that point, for an unrelated reason.
The decision to hire an executive director, along with Buell’s part in the process before resigning raised the ire of several past presidents, including Darlene Castle.
Castle said she felt that Buell’s leadership had been secretive, and that the chamber membership was not consulted about the decision to hire an executive director.
“The attitude that I’ve gotten is, it’s really not the membership’s business, it’s a board run organization and the board’s going to run it, and that’s the way it’s going to be,” Castle said.
Several other past presidents including Journal Publisher Desiree Cahoon recognized the need for an executive director, but admitted that the process seemed rushed.
When news broke about the executive director position and Buell’s resignation, she was on vacation and unavailable for comment. Buell later resigned her position at North County Bank.
Anderson was tabbed to move several slots up the Chamber ladder, and slid into the President’s position on short notice.
One of the first steps Anderson took was to quiet the growing controversy by putting a temporary stop to the search for an executive director.
“This is a big step for our chamber and we want to make sure it’s done right. When looking at these decisions, our board may not always have the expertise, but thankfully we have the ability to draw on a very strong membership to help guide us in the process,” Anderson said.
For more information, visit the www.lschamber.org.