RANTOUL — Amanda Vickery is the new Rantoul Area Chamber of Commerce executive director.
The chamber board announced the hiring on Monday.
A native of Shipshewana, Ind., Vickery moved to Danville, where she worked for the city of Danville from 2015-2019. She earned an associate degree from Danville Community College.
She was a co-founder of First Fridays in downtown Danville, developed themes for each month and brought hundreds of people to the downtown area. She said she feels it is important to develop relationships with the business owners and to help them promote their businesses throughout the area.
Michael Fox, president of the chamber board of directors, said the board feels “she brings experience and skills that can help the business community thrive.”
“She wants the chamber members to feel as though the chamber is their greatest resource and knows that it will take a lot of hard work and dedication,” Fox said. “However, she is ready to take on the task. She will be setting regular office hours in the future.”
Vickery said she was told about the opening by Village Administrator Scott Eisenhauer.
“He’s always been a great mentor, and I’ve always respected him a lot,” Vickery said of Eisenhauer. “I’m excited” about the job.
She said she enjoys the chamber of commerce-promotions type of work.
“I didn’t realize that this was a passion of mine until a little later than most people do,” she said.
Vickery said she has a son who is 5.
“I really want him to grow up in a place like Rantoul,” she said. “I grew up in a small town. I want him to have that smalltown feel with great people. We do all that kind of fun stuff together. I put being a mom high on the list of things I enjoy doing.”
Vickery succeeds Belynda Allen, who left in June to take a position in western Illinois.
The chamber will host a meet-and-greet time for Vickery from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 12, at the chamber office, 120 E. Sangamon Ave.