“I’m really happy because I believe in what they do,” Woodring said of the board.
The Sparks Chamber is accepting applications to fill five vacancies on the board that will be created by term limits. Qualified applicants will be placed on a ballot and voted on by the chamber’s general membership during December. The winning applicants will take office in January 2009.
The three directors vacating their seats are Elaine Alexander, a certified public accountant; Beth Cooney, executive director of marketing at John Ascuaga’s Nugget; and Phil Zive, director of community relations for Sierra Nevada Baseball.
There are two other seats for which applicants can apply, but the current directors that fill those positions will be reapplying for their spots: Woodring and Kathy Carrico, state training director for the Nevada Small Business Development Center.
Woodring, who’s been with the company formerly known as Sierra Pacific Power Co. for more than three years, said the position has provided him an opportunity to serve the chamber and business community at large.
He is seeking a second three-year term after serving one year of the three-year term he inherited from his manager, who served the first two years.
The board’s application process invites any Sparks Chamber member to participate. Ideal candidates, executive director Len Stevens said, will have been active in Sparks’ and other chambers with service on committees that “go above and beyond the call and duty and who really understands the vision of what the Sparks Chamber is about.”
Stevens said the board is always looking to attract a variety of employees from the small and big business arenas to have well-rounded perspectives, ideas and strategies on issues affecting business owners.
“We want small-business people and CEOs who come with a different view so that not everybody’s on the same page,” he said. “We want a person who sees things from different angles and makes us productive and has shown us ideas with growth and development, and with the (merge of) the Hispanic Chamber (of Commerce), that’s as forward-thinking a process as any chamber has seen.”
Because of the increase in the number of seats on the Board of Directors from 15 to 23 this year, Stevens said the chamber will have an opportunity to reinstate its monthly executive board meetings, which consist of the president and various vice presidents getting together to closely examine the organization’s issues and “do some homework.”
The executive board stopped meeting almost five years ago, Stevens said, because the board of directors was small enough to tackle its issues on its own.
“We didn’t have Star-Spangled Sparks, we didn’t have the Business Forum,” he said. “But now with the addition of the merger (with the Hispanic chamber) and so many new programs, we feel like we have to start meeting again to do the work that’s necessary.
“We have a really good body of people and I just love the diversity,” Stevens said. “That’s the thing I love most about this board. We are truly the mirror of this community. We have big businesses, small businesses, top management — it’s everything. It’s diverse, culturally. I think that’s why we’ve grown the way we have.”
Applicants must be members in good standing with the Sparks Chamber, have a history of involvement in the community, particularly in the chamber or other community organizations, and submit a 100-word, typed qualification summary that includes the applicant’s interest in serving on the board, committees and organizations in which they participate and business experience and affiliation. Applications must be delivered to the Sparks Chamber office via e-mail, fax, mail or can be hand-delivered by Oct. 8.
Board members will be expected to fulfill certain responsibilities that require time and financial contributions, including attendance at all board meetings and activities, special events and retreats and representing the Sparks Chamber to individuals, organizations and the public.
For more information, visit www.sparkschamber.org.