After celebrating her first year on the job a couple of months ago, Pahrump Valley Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Salli Kerr is stepping down from the position.
Kerr’s resignation will go into effect on Friday, as she departs for her new role as executive director of Nevada Outreach Training Organization. The organization provides case management, needs assessment, emergency assistance for rent, utilities and prescription needs, family support and referrals and information for low-income parents and families who live in Nye County.
Chamber President Deborah Davis had nothing but kind things to say about Kerr and her time as CEO.
“The Board of Directors appreciates all the work Salli has done in the office, at our festivals/expos and putting a new and bright face on the Pahrump Valley Chamber of Commerce,” Davis said. “She has represented the chamber well.”
Kerr explained that she wasn’t in search of a new job, as there weren’t many roles that would pull her away from the chamber, but this opportunity was too good to pass up.
“Nevada Outreach was searching for a new executive director and I saw it as a great opportunity to work with a longstanding non-profit here in town,” Kerr said. “I had someone approach me about running for it and I decided that I should put an application in. It’s an opportunity to continue to help develop programs that our community needs.
“I wish that my tenure at the chamber could have been longer, but I knew that if NOTO hired the right person, this opportunity would not come up again.”
Kerr’s sudden exit from the chamber comes weeks after the organization orchestrated one of the biggest events held in Pahrump each year.
“We are proud of the success of this year’s chamber presentation of the Pahrump Fall Festival,” Davis said. “Salli’s organizational skills, combined with community volunteers, produced one of the best Fall Festivals in recent memory.”
Davis is confident in her staff to keep things running smoothly as the chamber goes through the process of filling the CEO position. Davis said that office manager Karen Pierce and executive assistant Matt Braun are more than capable of conducting the work with the aid of the board of directors for the time being.
Kerr agreed with Davis and said that all that were involved with putting on the Fall Festival are capable of producing a successful event with or without her guidance.
“The committees that put the Fall Festival on certainly have the experience and our board of directors can certainly guide someone in that. We’ve got good records and notes and a ton of people stepped up to make that happen.
“We’re still in the recap phase from this year’s event, so nobody will really be surprised by anything. They’ll get a good leader in that can coordinate that and the board members will help with that as well.”
Kerr said that she will do anything she can to help the chamber find a replacement and that she plans to stay involved with her former employer as well.
“I intend to stay really active with the chamber,” she said. “We’re parting on good terms and I love being part of the chamber and I will continue to be part of the chamber. I’m not going anywhere, I want this to be a smooth transition.”
Contact reporter Mick Akers at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @mickakers on Twitter.