September/October 2021

Page 6


A New Chapter


y heart is full of gratitude as I begin a new

and dedicated volunteers. I look forward to partnering

chapter with the St Cloud Area Chamber of

with you to strategically position the Chamber as the

Commerce. I visited St. Cloud 25 years ago as a tourist.

area’s leading convener of great ideas, leadership,

Soon thereafter I relocated from south Florida and now

engagement, and business advocacy. I am dedicated

have spent nearly half my life promoting this great place.

to building on our success, taking on new challenges,

When first introduced to the region I was enticed by

and continuously looking for new and innovative

the welcoming feel, quality of life, cost of living, work

opportunities for growth.

opportunities, and impressive business growth. Since

Through the years I’ve had the pleasure to get to

day one, I have been so proud to work for the Chamber,

know and work alongside so many of you, and I look

an organization that contributes to these community

forward to continuing to do so in my new capacity.

successes every day.

And for those of you I do not know yet, I’m eager to

As executive director of the Chamber’s Convention

meet you and build our relationship. I’m confident

and Visitors Bureau, I’ve had the great privilege to

that together we will accomplish great things for our

represent the St. Cloud area and its hospitality and

community and local business.

tourism industry. It has been an incredibly rewarding

I am humbled, thankful, and honored to carry on

experience working with our team to bring hundreds of

our Chamber’s 152-year legacy and continue the great

thousands of people to town. These visitors have been

work done by past and current board members,

introduced to new experiences, made lifelong memories,

volunteers, and of course retired President Teresa Bohnen.

and contributed to our local economies through leisure

I encourage you to share your ideas and hopes for the

travel, meetings and conventions, special events, and

future of the Chamber, my door is always open and

tournaments. Together we must continue to ensure that

I look forward to talking with you soon.

our destination is full of unique amenities that contribute to our quality of life, benefit residents, draw visitors, and attract and retain employers and employees. As your new Chamber president I’m thrilled for the opportunity to lead our successful 5-Star Chamber and work with the organization’s talented team, members,

Editor’s Note: Learn more about Julie in "New at the Top" on page 15.

Julie Lunning Publisher

2020-21 BOARD MEMBERS ____________________________

Main Phone: 320-251-2940 • Automated Reservation Line: 320-656-3826 • Program Hotline: 320-656-3825 • ST. CLOUD AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE STAFF ____________________________ President: Julie Lunning, ext. 104 Vice President: Gail Ivers, ext. 109 Communications & Workforce Development Coordinator: Open Position Special Events Coordinator: Laura Wagner, ext. 131

Membership Specialist: Antoinette Valenzuela, ext. 134 Administrative Assistant: Vicki Lenneman, ext. 122 Administrative Assistant: Shelly Imdieke, ext. 100 Communications Intern: Tess Glenzinski

Marilyn Birkland, LocaliQ Ron Brandenburg, Quinlivan & Hughes, Past Board Chair

Willie Jett, St. Cloud School District Kevin Johnson, K. Johnson Construction, Board Vice Chair Bernie Perryman, Batteries Plus Bulbs, Board Chair

John Bryant, Geo-Comm

Paul Radeke, BerganKDV

Main Phone: 320-251-4170

Christy Gilleland, Gilleland Chevrolet Cadillac

Brenda Sickler, Theisen Dental

Executive Director: Rachel Thompson, ext. 111

Allison Waggoner, DCI Inc.

Tanja Goering

Director of Sports & Special Events: Dana Randt, ext. 110

Ray Herrington, Pioneer Place on Fifth

Donella Westphal, Jules’ Bistro

Sales Manager: Nikki Fisher, ext. 112

Joe Hellie, CentraCare

Social Media & Marketing Specialist: Emily Bertram, ext. 129

Patrick Hollermann, InteleCONNECT

CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU STAFF ____________________________

Chriss Wohlleber Dr. Jason Woods, St. Cloud State University Colleen Zoffka