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New executive director of the San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce: Vernadel Peterson
Vernadel Peterson, formerly the executive director of the Centralia-Chehalis Chamber of Commerce, is the new executive director of the San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce.
Today is her first day on the job. She succeeds Debbie Pigman, who retired Sept. 15.
The Chamber of Commerce began searching for a new executive director in August, after Pigman announced her retirement.
"The chamber board executive search committee’s intent was hire to local," Chamber President Joy Sevier said in a press release. "Many excellent local candidates applied. Vernadel’s credentials set her apart as the leading candidate to help strengthen and elevate both the San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce and the San Juan Island business community."
The San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce is located at 135 Spring St., Friday Harbor. The phone number is 378-5240; the e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Peterson comes from a chamber with a membership between 650-700. At Centralia-Chehalis, she was one of four full-time staff members; another staff member worked on commission.
"I enjoyed working for her," Centralia-Chehalis Chamber Marketing Director Brittany Voie said. "She's good at building a team atmosphere. She's very easy to work with, no matter what kind of personality you are. You know what you're getting with her."
Voie said managing a chamber that serves two communities requires political and bridge-building skills, and an ability to promote both cities equally. "She did great," Voie said. "You guys are really lucky to have her up there."