Goodbye for now, friends!

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This is not a Chamber article that I thought I would be writing so soon. Two weeks ago, I submitted a letter to the Benton County/Camden Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors announcing my resignation of the executive director position effective Friday, June 7.

My time at the Chamber has been the highlight of my career thus far. The passion that I have for Benton County is what drove me during my 6-year tenure at the Chamber. From beginning as the executive assistant, to working hard to become the director of tourism, and then on to becoming the executive director has been the most rewarding journey.

I have enjoyed such strong support and encouragement, and it all has been greatly appreciated. From the kind words that so many have said to me about the Chamber, to the random “stops” in Wal-Mart when someone said, “I think you’re doing a great job!” These things have meant so much to me along this journey, and I truly thank you for being so kind.

As I prepare to leave this position, I have one final request. The Chamber has come so far in recent years. Together, we have climbed many hills and had many “wins” for Benton County. Please, keep this momentum going! Keep supporting, keep encouraging, keep building, keep believing, and keep pushing for positive changes in this community that we all love.

This was not a decision that I came to lightly, but one that I made as the best choice for my family. It is most certainly bittersweet, but I am very excited for my future. Although I am sad to see this chapter of my career come to a close, I am eager to turn the page and begin a new one.

In the coming days, I will be taking a marketing position with a company in the private sector. I am very excited for this wonderful opportunity to use my skills in a completely different way. Even so, I have no plans to leave Benton County. I truly love this county and the people in it. I remain ready to volunteer to assist with anything that will help the community, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.

I have no doubt that the Chamber Board will find a qualified new director who will bring his or her own vision to the position, and I’m sincerely looking forward to seeing great things happen. Stephanie Harcleroad will remain in the executive assistant position. If you have any questions or need assistance before a new director is hired, please contact her for help. Stephanie will continue to be an asset to the Chamber, and I am thankful to have had her as my executive assistant these past two years.

I want to say thank you again to each person who has supported me. You made my job at the Chamber go so smoothly. It takes a team to make positive change, and I was certainly blessed to have a great team and community behind me.

Thank you for allowing me to serve Benton County in this capacity. Thank you for allowing me to take this journey, and for joining me along the way. I treasured every minute and I hope that our paths will cross again. I wish only the best for our beloved Benton County.

-Jenna Cole-Wilson

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