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Thu, Jan. 28

Grand Canyon Chamber and Visitor Bureau annual meeting takes a look at new year
Board members, goals and new opportunities announced

The Grand Canyon Chamber of Commerce welcomed members to its annual meeting Jan. 19.
Erin Ford/WGCN

The Grand Canyon Chamber of Commerce welcomed members to its annual meeting Jan. 19.

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. — At its 2017 annual meeting Jan. 19, Grand Canyon Chamber of Commerce manager Laura Chastain announced this year’s board members and underscored some of the actions the Chamber is undertaking, as well as some new opportunities for members.

Michael Keller (Delaware North) was named Board president, with Courtney Dixon (Xanterra) serving as secretary and Julie Aldaz (Red Feather Lodge) serving as treasurer. Other Board members include ClayAnn Cook (Big E Steakhouse), Becky Wirth (Canyon Flight Trading Company), Freda Ranenfuehrer (Best Western Squire Inn) and Clarinda Vail (RP’s Stage Stop).

Chastain, who came to the Grand Canyon from Yosemite National Park just last year, has already been hard at work to up the Chamber’s game in 2017, including organizing FAM tours for job developers to learn what Tusayan and Grand Canyon businesses have to offer.

“My background is in human resources,” Chastain said. “So I’m very interested in addressing staffing issues here in the Canyon.”

That includes offering a customer service class in partnership with Grand Canyon National Park’s Albright Training Center.

“Businesses need to know how they can offer visitors the best experience when they come to visit the Canyon,” she said. “Anyone wearing a uniform or a nametag is going to be asked a question. All employees need to know about other businesses and what they do so that we can answer those questions and help our guests.”

The Chamber is also working on a new visitor’s guide and map to give guests a little more information on businesses and activities as they pass through.

Business and community involvement are also on the list for the year. After the Chamber’s first successful job fair last fall, two more are on the schedule in February and August. Community-wide events like Trunk or Treat and the Independence Day Parade and party are on the calendar, and a new half-marathon is in the works for October. Chastain also plans to host several networking mixers to encourage businesses to work together.

“I want to encourage everyone to come to the board meetings and get involved,” Chastain said. “Our board meetings are open once a month. Come and offer your ideas. We’re here for you.”

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