SCC Exec. Director Leaves For Newspaper

Posted: July 3, 2014

WOODSTOCK — Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce’s executive director will leave Monday to take a position with the Northern Virginia Daily newspaper in Strasburg.

Jackie Thompson formally announced her departure to the chamber’s board of directors at its meeting on June 24, having held her position for one year.

Thompson said her decision to change jobs came after she and her husband, Charles, adopted a 9-year-old girl in late February, the legal process for which is still under way.

 “I felt like I needed a position that was less time-consuming,” Thompson said in a phone interview Tuesday. “I feel very comfortable with the transition.”

Thompson will be working in the classified advertising and obituary departments at the Northern Virginia Daily. No stranger to the newspaper business, she previously served as editor of the Shenandoah Journal, the North Fork Journal and the Caswell Messenger in North Carolina.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in English and communications/journalism from Averett University.

Thompson lives in Strasburg, where she was administrative assistant for the Strasburg Chamber of Commerce for six years until coming to Woodstock. She succeeded Jenna French, the current director of tourism and marketing for Shenandoah County.

French was executive director of the Shenandoah chamber for seven months.

Justin Wightman, Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce vice president, said the turnover is to be expected.

 “It is a new organization,” Wightman said of the county chamber, which formed in January 2013. “It takes a little bit of a learning curve.”

The chamber’s search committee is accepting applications until July 11, but Wightman said it already has received more than anticipated. He said the job posting on brought in multiple applications from around the country.

Thompson’s salary as executive director was $25,000, but Wightman said the board will decide the new salary at its meeting next Tuesday.

The new executive director will be responsible for the leadership and management of the 309-member organization, expanding revenue and improving the chamber’s external relationships while expanding into new markets.

A full job description, which Wightman said Thompson helped write, can be found at .

Contact Amelia Brust at 574-6293 or

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