Thursday, April 18, 2024

Manson Chamber of Commerce appoints new Executive Director and Visitor Center Manager

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MANSON - The Manson Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce the appointment of Timi Starkweather as Manson Chamber of Commerce’s Executive Director and Sue Templeton, Manson Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center Manager. The Past Executive Director, Tom Tochterman stepped down late 2023 and currently serves on the Chamber Board as Director of Community Development.  Joining Tom on the Board are Bill Swayne, President; Kevin Cameron, Vice- president; Becca Hines, Events Director; Erik Cooper, Publicity Director; Kim Ustanik, Treasurer; Janice Vyborny, Secretary; and Mariah Koester, Marketing Director.

 “We have an amazing and engaged team moving forward in 2024. I’m excited,” Timi said.

Timi Starweather - Timi Starkweather was born and grew up in Exeter, New Hampshire. After graduating high school, she attended McIntosh College in Dover, New Hampshire and LaSalle Interior Design School where they offer students the chance to take a passion and turn it into their future.

Timi met and married Dana Starkweather 1964. Dana was in the United States Coast Guard and retired with the rank of captain. During their years in the military they raised five children and lived in many areas around the United States and Europe. After Dana’s retirement, the Starkweather’s moved to Manson in 2003 and soon, both were very active in our community. Sadly, Dana passed away October 2023, an immeasurable loss for Timi and our community.

Over the years, Timi has built an amazing resume. She owned a design-build firm in Washington D.C., real estate agent in United Kingdom, she and Dana were founders and owners of first Organic herb company in Washington state, owner, and designer of a modular building company covering Washington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho, and California. Owner of Fromaggio Restaurant, ice cream and cheese factory in Manson and she served as president of the board for Heritage Heights Assisted Living in Chelan and leader of the Women’s ministry at North Shore Bible Church in Manson.

Timi has definite goals for her tenure as the Manson Chamber Executive Director and with the help of the entire Manson Board of Directors these goals will be realized.

  • Develop and implement a strategic plan in collaboration with the board to drive economic growth. Provide visionary leadership to effectively position the chamber as the primary advocate for businesses and community development.
  • Foster strong relationships with existing Chamber members
  • Develop strategies to attract and recruit new members
  • Serve as primary spokesperson and advocate to the business community 
  • Collaborate with government and community organizations to promote policies and initiatives that support local businesses!
  • Ensure financial stability and sustainability
  • Oversee fundraising programs
  • Identify programs and initiatives that align with the chamber's mission and goals
  • Collaborate with local businesses and organizations to develop community events that promote tourism

When asked what are the top three priorities the Manson Chamber needs to focus on, Timi replied, “Ensuring financial stability, fostering strong relationships with businesses and the community, and community development.

Sue Templeton - Sue Templeton was born in Kentville, Nova Scotia, Canada and immigrated to the United States with her parents to Washington State as a young child. Sue attended Great Falls Business College and received a degree in business administration from Bellevue College. Sue worked in the medical profession her entire career starting with Cascade County Health Department in Great Falls, Montana. She spent 19 years at Evergreen Hospital Medical Center, Kirkland, Washington, where she worked in a variety of management positions. She spent an additional 27 years at EvergreenHealth, as a Medical Clinic Administrator. Since moving to Manson, Sue was a Chelan Valley Hope ESL volunteer instructor 2018-2020, and recently served on the Board of Directors for Chelan Valley Hope. Sue is currently a volunteer at the Manson Grange.  In 2023, Sue began volunteering as an Ambassador at the Manson Chamber of Commerce’s Visitor Center.

Sue and husband Steve purchased land in Manson in 2015, built a home and moved to Manson full-time in 2018. Sue and Steve have two grown children and six granddaughters, all of whom absolutely love their visits to Manson and spending time with Nana and Papa. The family enjoys swimming and boating in the lake and visiting the wineries and eateries in our area. When asked what she likes about living in Manson she replied, “The lake and the beauty of the area in all seasons of the year, and walkability of Manson. My husband and I walk the downtown Manson area nearly every day, rain, snow or shine. We have found Manson to have an inviting small-town atmosphere, where everyone is friendly and welcoming.”

Sue’s duties as Visitor Center Manager include administrative support to Timi Starkweather and the Board of Director’s, as needed, for special projects. Sue’s goal is to extend the days and hours the Visitor’s Center is open between Memorial Day through Labor Day weekend. These extended hours will be made possible by the support of our wonderful volunteers. Another goal is to expand the souvenir shop items by responding to the suggestions and requests of our visitors. When in town, be sure to stop by the Manson Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center, meet Sue and our volunteer staff, check out the souvenirs, and find out how you can be part of this amazing volunteer team to support our local businesses.

The Mission of the Manson Chamber of Commerce is to support and assist our community members to successfully grow now and in the future. The Manson Chamber of Commerce is organized to cultivate economic growth and vitality by providing opportunities and support for businesses and the community to prosper.

Looking for more information about joining the Manson Chamber? Stop by the Visitor’s Center during working hours or visit their website www.mansonchamber.com/membership

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