Vermont Chamber of Commerce names Betsy Bishop new president

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Vermont Chamber of Commerce names Betsy Bishop new president

Tue, 06/23/2009 - 9:37am -- tim

The Vermont Chamber of Commerce announced today the selection of Betsy Bishop as the President of the state s premier business organization, representing a diverse cross section of businesses around the state.
Charged with leading the Vermont Chamber and its 1,500 members, Bishop said, I look forward to this opportunity to work with Vermont businesses, many of which are facing unprecedented challenges. With the volunteer board and Vermont Chamber members, I will continue to provide a strong voice for Vermont businesses as they strive to maintain employment levels and grow in this economy.
A resident of East Montpelier, Bishop currently serves as the Commissioner of Economic Development. She recently completed the successful merger of two Vermont state departments, streamlining government and achieving cost savings for Vermont taxpayers. She was also instrumental in the passage of the 2009 package of economic development initiatives, including the enactment of a Vermont research and development tax credit.
Bishop has worked for Governor Jim Douglas since his election in 2002, beginning with his transition team. She then went on to lead his policy and legislative team for six years as his Deputy Chief of Staff and recently as Economic Development Commissioner. Prior to this work, Bishop served as Vice President of Government Affairs at the Vermont Chamber of Commerce from 1994 to 1998, before starting her own company which advocated for businesses in the state legislative and regulatory arenas. She initially launched her career with eight years in marketing and advertising.
Mark Saba, Vermont Chamber First Vice Chair, Chair of the Selection Committee, and owner of Vermont s Formula Ford Auto Group, said, Betsy s knowledge of business in Vermont and her understanding of the kind of advocacy that Vermont businesses need make her uniquely suited to lead the Vermont Chamber of Commerce.
Bishop replaces interim Vermont Chamber President Chris Barbieri. Barbieri was President of the Vermont Chamber for many years before leaving in 2003 to run the Vermont Chamber s international trade office in Shanghai, China and has been serving on an interim basis since December.
Betsy s proven ability to work with Vermont s diverse employer community and state leaders while balancing intricate policy issues will be an immense advantage to the Vermont Chamber and its member businesses, as we develop dynamic solutions to the challenges that lie ahead, stated Chris Barbieri, Interim Vermont Chamber President.
After an extensive interview process, a search committee comprised of leading Vermont employers from diverse business sectors and sizes all around the state selected Bishop as the top candidate. She will begin working at the Vermont Chamber in mid July.