Windham no longer interim, now Chamber head

Published 8:17 pm Tuesday, August 31, 2010

After four months as interim president, Leigh Anne Windham officially takes over the leadership role at the Pike County Chamber of Commerce beginning today.

“I’m excited,” Windham said. “My focus is going to remain what it has been for the past for months: supporting our membership and reinforcing the benefits for our members.”

Windham, who had been membership director of the Chamber for more than three and a half years, took over as interim after the resignation of long-time president Jenniffer Barner in early May. The board appointed Windham interim president at that time, and began the search for a new president.

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“The search for president has been longer than I wanted it to be,” said Renee Dickerson, chairman of the board. “It was by no means easy … we had some very good candidates, but among those we interviewed, Leigh Anne was the best.

“I think her job performance during the interim speaks for itself.”

During the summer, the Chamber has launched the Junior Ambassadors program, which was started last spring; held several key membership events, including a breakfast with U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions; created a hospitality committee, which includes representatives from throughout the community and seeks to create a comprehensive community calendar and to “make sure we as a community see about our guests and are keyed in what we need to know about events and happenings in our community,” Windham said; developed a Holiday Market event, which will take place Nov. 6 at the Troy Recreation Center and will feature local merchants and retailers, as well as arts and crafts vendors; improved the Chamber’s website; and worked to help refocus and support ongoing programs and committees of the Chamber, from the Farm City committee to the education committee.

Dickerson said Windham possesses all the skills the board sought in a new president, including an innate understanding of Pike County that comes from being a native of the county and a strong relationship with Chamber’s approximately 425 members. “She already had a good relationship with members, and that is an asset to the Chamber and the community,” Dickerson said.

For Windham, the perspective of having worked as a membership director continues to influence her vision for the Chamber. “I know how important our Chamber is to our members, and I’m doing my best to get out and about and get in our members’ doors,” she said. “And, I want them to know if they’ve not seen me and they need to talk to me about an issue, all they need to do is let me know. I need my members to feel confident in the fact that I’m just a phone call away.”

Windham, a graduate of Charles Henderson High School and Troy State University, is married to Tommy Windham. They are the parents of twin daughters.