Jimmy Warren started his new job as the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce Director of Membership Monday.
Warren, originally from Crossett, graduated with a communications degree from Arkansas Tech University and lives in Conway with wife Shakira and daughters Amaya, 6, and Alivia, 2.
The Warrens moved to Conway three years ago when Warren accepted a job with Hewlett-Packard. Unaffected by layoffs, Warren found out about the open position with the Chamber while working at HP’s inside sales organization.
As a volunteer with Junior Achievement of Arkansas, Soaring Wings Ranch and Carolyn Lewis Elementary School, Warren was looking for a way to make a bigger investment in the community and become more involved.
"I wanted to make Conway a better place for raising my children," he said. "It was already great, but I knew it could always be better, so I wanted to be involved in the community and make it a better Conway for all of us."
Warren is replacing former Director of Membership Whitney Cummings, who is now director of events, and former Director of Events Mary Margaret Satterfield has a newly created position, director of Toad Suck Daze and events.
Satterfield will be in charge of large-scale events like the Annual Meeting and Business Expo and Cummings will organize smaller-scale events, allowing both to focus more time growing Chamber events, Satterfield said.
Director of membership involves Chamber of Commerce Member relations, including member visits and check-ins, problem solving, ribbon cutting ceremonies and new member orientations.
"Basically, he’s going to be the face the Member will see through their membership," Cummings said.
Cummings said hiring Warren will help the Chamber better represent the community in which it serves.
"The Chamber likes for their staff to be as diverse as the Conway community, so that is one of the things we try to achieve, to make sure we can be as diverse as possible to bring as many opinions and different groups together to help us help Conway," she said.
Warren said his hire highlights the Chamber’s commitment to a diverse staff and diverse community.
"I hope it shows the area of Conway and the Chamber’s appreciation for diversity and commitment to having a diverse society as Conway is growing to be," he said.
Not only does the Chamber want to see more minority businesses come to Conway, Warren said, but it also wants to extend a helping hand to see what it can do to assist.
"My first and foremost goal is to make sure I’m doing whatever I can to help make Conway better," he said. "I want to see Conway be as successful as anybody else. We have a strong commitment to education and I think that on the route we’re headed we are definitely going to be a very successful town."
(Staff writer Michelle Corbet can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 505-1215. To comment on this and other stories in the Log Cabin, log on to www.thecabin.net. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)