Chamber CEO named a top woman in business

Owensboro Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Candance Castlen Brake was named one of seven top women in business by The Lane Report.

According to the Kentucky business and economic news outlet, Brake stood out as one of the women around Kentucky and southern Indiana who is making an impact in business, the professions, politics and economic development.

“The intent is to recognize not the household names, but those in key roles whose work ethic and body of work are making important contributions to commerce – and life – in the area,” the article said.

Brake has been in her current role since March 2015. Prior to that she served as a three-term city commissioner from 2004 to 2010, was executive vice president of the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Corporation and Deputy Judge-Executive for Daviess County Fiscal Court.

According to Brake, being part of the efforts in the downtown placemaking initiative is her top accomplishment.

But her impact on the community is echoed beyond that single project.

“Candance has been our most valuable asset in helping to transform Visit Owensboro into an award-winning organization,” said Mark Calitri, President & CEO of Visit Owensboro. “In today’s world filled with so much negativity Candance is a positive light for Visit Owensboro, me personally, and she is Owensboro’s #1 cheerleader.”

Mayor Tom Watson said he was surprised Brake hadn’t been recognized before now.

“I served on the city commission with her and was always amazed at her insight on the big picture,” he said. “If there is anyone that has the pulse of this community better that she does I’d sure like to meet them.”

Although holding many leadership roles in the community, Brake told The Lane Report her biggest challenge was worrying about her career.

“Where it would lead next and how I would balance that with my family,” she said. “I finally realized that if you focus on the important things in life, everything works out.”

By:  Ashley Sorce  originally published in The Owensboro Times