A Denver resident has been tapped to serve as the first Lincolnton/Lincoln County Chamber of Commerceâ€™s membership services person.
Crystal Gettys, wife of Lincoln County Schoolsâ€™ facilities director Darrell Gettys, will start in her new position March 12.
The decision was made by a committee who received more than 10 applications for the newly-created position. Interviews wrapped up last week according to Chamber President Ken Kindley.
â€œAs a membership services person, she will help the Chamber provide more contact with membership through visitations and by being involved with the planning of Chamber events,â€ said Kindley. â€œMrs. Gettys has extensive experience in marketing and customer service.â€ When asked, Kindley did not want to reveal her salary.
Kindley added Gettys will serve the entire county, not just part of it.
The creation of a membership services person has been a major goal of the Chamber for a long time. During a community meeting in Denver during 2006, people in attendance requested having a greater Chamber presence in the eastern end of Lincoln County.
In a Sept. 6 article, that sentiment was reinforced during the August East Lincoln Area Council meeting, where then-Chairman Todd Wulfhorst asked for ideas on how to raise money for the new position.
â€œThe growth is down here and having this person will meet this need,â€ said Wulfhorst. â€œThe money is there.â€
He estimated there was an initial $10,000 available based on east Lincoln membership alone.
Wulfhorst also suggested raising an additional $10,000 via a 10 percent dues increase.
Business owners Bob Hecht of Century 21 Hecht Realty and Joe DiPento of Allstate Insurance said during that meeting they would pay more to have a membership services position.
Earlier this month, there was talk of putting the new position on hold due to the possibility of a name change from Lincolnton/Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce.
Led by Chamber Chairman Jack Funk, the idea was pitched to the Lincolnton City Council, who passed a resolution not to support a name change.
City leaders also threatened to withdraw $16,000 in funding which the Chamberâ€™s used to fund its visitor information center.
With the name change issue put to rest, the Chamber leadership forged ahead with the search for the entityâ€™s first membership services person.
Besides working with membership issues, Gettys will also work to set up countywide kiosks which will use Chamber promotional materials to better promote Lincoln County.
â€œShe will also meet with city and county department managers on new and expanding businesses, seek out and assess successful membership service models at other Chambers and be accessible to provide Chamber members with building permit information, business expansion contacts and marketing information among other things,â€ said Kindley.
Gettys called being named the new membership services person â€œquite an honor.â€
â€œIt gives me a great opportunity to further know this area, since Iâ€™m not originally from Lincoln County,â€ said Gettys, adding sheâ€™s originally from Siler City. â€œIt will also be more of an opportunity for me to be involved in the community.â€
For more information on the Lincolnton/Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce, call (704) 735-3096.
by Jon Mayhew