Okanagan Chamber manager resigns due to COVID-19 cutbacks

Resignation gives room in budget for Chamber of Commerce to continue to serve community

As many businesses and organizations have had to make changes due to Covid-19, and the Greater Vernon Chamber has also had to adapt as it is fully supported through business membership and events.

To this point, Dione Chambers has resigned as general manager, which gives the Chamber some operational room in its budget to continue to provide vital services to the business community.

“We are extremely sad to see Dione go as she has elevated the Chamber to a whole new level and she has made significant contributions to the organization. We wish her well as she moves on to new opportunities,” said Krystin Kempton, president of the volunteer board of directors.

Chambers had been general manager of the Chamber for three years.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with the Greater Vernon Chamber, and particularly getting to know the diverse and passionate entrepreneurs who are the backbone of the community. I want to thank the board, members and the staff for their support,” said Chambers.

“I look forward to reconnecting when the time is right. We are passionate about the business community and getting the economy back up and running.”

The position of general manager will remain vacant until the Chamber is in a financial position to hire.

“The Chamber is in great hands as Dan Proulx, membership coordinator, and Richard Rolke, communications coordinator, remain in place and they have considerable expertise and community connections. Our board is confident they will provide much-needed continuity as the Chamber continues to support its members during the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Kempton.

“There is no question that all of us are going through uncertain times, but one thing remains consistent and that is the Chamber’s dedication to its members and the community.”

The Chamber’s focus in recent weeks has included touching base with members, providing access to updated resources and creating an online directory of businesses that are open.

READ MORE: Vernon Chamber compiles extensive takeout list

“A webinar series is also being launched and advocacy has been ramped up to ensure that all levels of government know what entrepreneurs need to not only survive but thrive. We encourage our members to reach out to us at any time. We are here for you,” said Kempton.

The Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce is a non-profit organization that is fully funded through membership. It represents 600-plus members and has been the leading voice of business in the North Okanagan since 1897.

READ MORE: ‘We’re winning, but we haven’t won yet,’ Vernon-Monashee MLA on COVID-19


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