DERRY — The Greater Derry Londonderry Chamber of Commerce is moving forward with a restructuring plan to become more of a full-time service to the community. But the group will lose its executive director as a result.
Gina Gulino-Payne will leave the top job following a decision by the Chamber's Board of Directors last week to make the position full time.
Gulino-Payne has served as Chamber director for the last 13 years, working 25 hours a week.
She said she would not stay, citing family commitments and wanting to spend time with her two daughters.
No official date for Gulino-Payne's departure was given, but she urged directors to advertise the position immediately.
Attorney and Chamber board president William Parnell said the decision to bring the Chamber into a full-time model will better serve its communities.
"And what exactly that will mean, we're working that out," he said.
The Chamber office is located in the Adams Memorial Building in downtown Derry. The office is open Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
As part of the restructuring, office hours could change, Parnell said, as the group studies the volume of what is needed throughout the day.
Right now, the Chamber has more than 260 members from Derry, Londonderry, Manchester, Windham, Auburn, Atkinson, Hampstead and Chester.
In 2006, the chamber added "Londonderry" to its name to better reflect its business service area.
The Chamber awards Citizen and Business of the Year, and has sponsored the Derry Holiday Parade for more than 25 years.
The group works with towns on economic development projects and community issues.
Parnell said making the change will benefit those the Chamber serves.
"It will give us the opportunity to do a lot more outreach," he said.
Gulino-Payne will stay on through the transition process to assist the new director and help with any training needed.
She said she looks forward to what lies ahead.
"Everything happens for a reason," she said Monday.
Anyone interested in applying for the executive director's position can forward a letter of interest and resume to the Greater Derry Londonderry Chamber of Commerce, Attn:: Chamber Leadership Committee, 47 West Broadway, Derry, 03038.
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