Fowler leaves chamber of commerce; interim named

Published 8:42 am Thursday, December 14, 2017

The Danville-Boyle County Chamber of Commerce held its holiday Business After Hours event at Community Trust Bank Tuesday evening.

Surrounded by holiday lights, a towering Christmas tree and even a real-life “Elf on a Shelf,” Danville-Boyle County Chamber of Commerce members said goodbye to its longtime executive director Paula Fowler, and welcomed an interim director Tuesday evening.

During its monthly Business After Hours holiday networking event at Community Trust Bank, many warm hugs and well-wishes engulfed Fowler as she ends her 14-year career with the chamber.

Danville-Boyle County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Paula Fowler, says goodbye to chamber members who attended the monthly Business After Hours event at Community Trust Bank Tuesday evening. Fowler had been with the chamber for about 14 years.

When speaking to the gathering, Fowler said she always expected to retire in this community she has grown to love and where she has made many friends. With tears in her eyes, she invited her friends and associates to visit her any time they are in North Carolina.

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Fowler said the hard decision to leave Danville was made because of wanting and needing to be near her family and aging parents.

At the same time, Myrna Miller was buzzing around the bank’s rooms, making sure the event was going smoothly, all the while being congratulated for being named as interim director of the chamber.

Myrna Miller was announced as interim director of the Danville-Boyle Chamber of Commerce at Tuesday evening’s Business After Hours event. A nationwide search will be conducted to fill the position full-time.

Miller said she will be interim director until the chamber finds the right person to fill the role in the community. She’s been involved with the chamber for at least 17 years, she said. 

“We have a wonderful chamber because of our wonderful community and people who want to get involved,” Miller said. 

Rick Waldon, incoming chamber board chairman said, “Paula has served our community very well for the last 14 years, but like everything, there’s going to be change as she moves to North Carolina.”

Waldon said a committee has been formed and is conducting a nationwide search to fill the position. However, anyone locally is also welcome to apply.

In the meantime, Waldon said nobody is more qualified than Miller to jump in and fill Fowler’s shoes because of her deep knowledge of the area, business environment and the inner workings of the chamber.

Miller said she has been told her temporary position may last about four months. When asked if she was interested in taking on the job permanently full-time, she laughed and said she works part-time so she has lots of time to devote to volunteering to important organizations like the United Way, Community Bank Advisory Board and the Kentucky State BBQ Festival. 

“This will be fun for me!” Miller said about being interim director. 

Amber Smith plays the part of an “Elf on the Shelf” during the Business After Hours holiday gathering. Smith said she was an elf sitting on the counter because, “Myrna asked me to.”