CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The Charleston Area Alliance elected four new board members and heard reports about some of the organization's programs at its annual meeting.
More than 50 people attended the event Tuesday afternoon in the alliance's conference room at 1116 Smith St.
Newly elected to the board to fill vacancies were: Brian Hemphill of West Virginia State University; Tyler London of The Dow Chemical Co.; Jeff McIntyre of West Virginia American Water; and, representing small business, George Smith of O.V. Smith & Sons.
Re-elected to three-year terms were: John Copenhaver of JPMorgan Chase, Julie Gurtis of United Bank, Virginia King of Kanawha Stone, Robert Pepper of NGK Spark Plug USA, and Jack Rossi of Arnett Foster Toothman. Re-elected representing small business were: John Calvert of Advanced Technical Solutions, Maureen O'Toole of ImageServ and Steve Rubin of Blue Creek Gas Co.
Andrew Dunlap, the alliance's economic development project manager, explained how a new program, the Educator/Industry Institute, brought educators together with more than 20 business leaders to help both groups understand what's needed in the future workforce.
"We're recruiting businesses for the next go-round," Dunlap said. For more information email him at ADun...@CharlestonAreaAlliance.org.
Cullen Naumoff, the alliance's Vision 2030 project manager, explained the Grow program, designed to support entrepreneurs, and Thrive, the alliance's crowd-sourcing initiative.
Julie Wirtz explained how Grow helped her turn a studio on the second floor of a building in the Bridge Road Shops into a business, Dressmakers Closet. Wirtz said she is about to hire three additional employees.
Naumoff played a video in which Jay Cipoletti explained how Thrive helped him turn an idea in a Twitter feed into a business named Hoopalytics.
JoEllen Zacks, the alliance's senior vice president, spoke briefly about several programs, including Generation Charleston, which involves more than 1,000 young people; Success Strategies, the alliance's business development workshops; and Elevations, the organization's professional women's network.
Susie Salisbury, the alliance's vice president of community development, discussed Leadership Kanawha Valley, the alliance's leadership development program; and ArtWalk, the monthly event that highlights downtown businesses.