November 2, 2018 – Economic and community development organizations continue to turn to executive search firms to find new leaders. Executive search firm The Chason Group recently placed Colin T. Martin as president and CEO of the Fayette County Chamber of Commerce in Fayetteville, GA. Kim Schnoes has been serving as interim president of the chamber and will assist with the transition when Mr. Martin joins the organization this month.
“Colin will bring a new approach to the chamber in Fayette County,” said Stephen Childs, 2018 chair of the chamber and an executive with Panasonic Automotive Systems Company of America. “The search committee identified several key character traits and an experience level we were looking for in terms of a new executive. Colin has a passion for collaboration, engaging leadership and implementing innovative ideas.”
Rob Parker, president of Pinewood Forest and 2020 chair of the chamber, led the search committee. The search began in July with the gathering of feedback from the board of directors and other community stakeholders on the type of professional needed to move the business organization forward.
“Colin has a clear understanding of how a non-profit business organization operates and the relevancy that a chamber brings to a community,” Mr. Parker said. “In Fayette County, we have a lot to offer businesses, families and particularly entrepreneurs. With Colin at the helm, the chamber will continue to be a major facilitator for growth in our community.”
Mr. Martin has experience in many arenas, including large and small chambers of commerce, said the Chason Group. He currently serves as president of the Harris County Chamber of Commerce in west Georgia and has also guided governmental affairs for the Greater Columbus (GA) Chamber of Commerce, both as a volunteer and staff member. During his tenure with the Harris Chamber, Mr. Martin has been instrumental in the creation of an economic development strategy as a part of the county government’s comprehensive plan. Other programs he has implemented include a social media strategy and the establishment of a legislative agenda for the business community. While with the Columbus Chamber, he initiated legislative efforts, in partnership with the Georgia Department of Economic and Georgia Chamber of Commerce, to add defense contractors to those industries eligible for job tax credits.
The Georgia native also held a leadership position with the Valley Partnership Joint Development Authority, a multi-county organization designed to enhance commerce and trade opportunities within the Columbus region.
“I have spent my career learning about and building successful organizations, all based on strong foundations,” said Mr. Martin. “The Fayette Chamber already has a solid foundation in place. My role will be to find new innovative programs and partnerships to enhance the relevancy of membership and make an impact on the community as a whole.”
McCormick Group Finds CEO for the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce
Following a national search, the McCormick Group placed Julie Coons as the new president and CEO of the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce. Jim Corcoran, who led the organization since 2010, recently stepped down from the role.
Founded in 1967, the Fayette Chamber of Commerce works to promote business and enhance economic and community development through leadership, service and advocacy for Fayette County. Representing more than 700 member businesses and organizations in Fayette County, the Fayette Chamber serves as a resource and brings together leadership from all areas of Fayette — business, government, non-profits, education, support services, public safety, arts and entertainment.
The Chason Group, which is based in Cartersville, GA, specializes in executive-level searches for companies and non-profit organizations, strategic visioning plans, coordinating relationship building strategies and building operating structures. Mr. Chason, who has over 30 years of experience in the business and non-profit world, is a former executive with the Georgia Chamber of Commerce.
Some of the firm’s past executive searches include: president of North Georgia Community Foundation, president of Brunswick & Glynn County Development Authority and vice president of economic development for the Cumming-Forsyth Chamber of Commerce.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media