Chamber names three members to leadership team

The Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce is restructuring after the departure of Jaclyn Graves to lead the Greater Owensboro Realtor Association and Jessica Kirk to join Boardwalk Pipeline Partners.

“The chamber has acted as a talent incubator for Owensboro for decades,” Candance Castlen Brake, chamber president, said in a news release. “The organization continues to attract the best and brightest people who are interested in serving our community. They sharpen their skills here and move on to continue their career and their community leadership trajectory.”

Shelly Nichols has been named vice president of the chamber.

The organization hasn’t had a vice president in recent years, but Brake said there have been vice presidents in the past.

She said, “Shelly will be working daily with our members, but she will also be hands-on with community engagement initiatives and other big picture projects.”

Nichols, a University of Kentucky graduate, is a former chamber membership development manager.

She spent seven years as director of civic engagement for the Public Life Foundation of Owensboro.

Nichols is also a former executive director of the OASIS shelter for victims of domestic violence and a former staffer at New Beginnings Sexual Assault Support Services.

Hannah Thurman, formerly the chamber’s events and communications coordinator, has been named director of talent programs, communications and events.

She will also serve as the executive director of Leadership Owensboro, the Chamber’s talent development program.

And Thurman will direct and manage Teachers in the Workplace, Community Campus and Chamber Young Professionals.

She has been with the chamber team since 2019.

Thurman has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Western Kentucky University.

She previously worked at WKU and Green River Distilling Co.

Martha Michael has been named communications and events coordinator.

She has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia.

Michael previously worked as a language and cultural assistant in Spain.

By: Keith Lawrence Messenger-Inquirer