After nearly a dozen years of running the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce, executive director Michelle Glaves is moving on.
Tami Murray, the current Visitor Center and Events Coordinator will take over for Glaves later this month.
While Glaves is calling it quits at the chamber, she isn’t planning on retiring from work altogether. Instead, she plans on pursuing her other passion – real estate.
“I’ve been interested in real estate for a long time,” Glaves said.
Glaves said that being in charge of the Soldotna Chamber has been a rewarding experience. Because the Soldotna Chamber and Visitor Center works closely with businesses, tourism industries and the community, all the chamber employees need to be versatile, Glaves said.
“It’s such a diverse job,” Glaves said. “We’re here for the businesses and the community as well. We have to wear a lot of hats.”
Glaves said the hardest part of moving on is no longer being able to work with so many community members on a day-to-day basis.
“We get to touch so many aspects of the community at large,” Glaves said.
While leaving will be emotionally difficult, Glaves said she’s leaving the chamber in good hands with Murray.
“She’s a great asset to have,” Glaves said.
Murray, who has worked for the visitor center for over four years, was chosen over more than 30 candidates in a nationwide search.
She said she believes her experience working with people from the community will make her successful in her new position.
“I’m pretty confident,” Murray said. “We have a great staff.”
Johna Beech, who before becoming president of the Kenai Chamber of Commerce worked under Glaves, said she learned a lot from her Soldotna counterpart.
“She’s a wonderful mentor,” Beech said. “Her knowledge base is astounding.”
Beech said that Glaves will be missed, but Murray, whom she has known for many years, will do a great job.
“I’m sad to see Michelle go, because she’s been a great partner to work with,” Beech said. “We’ve done a lot of things together, but I’m excited for Tami. She knows that organization from top to bottom.”
Reach Ian Foley at Ian.email@example.com