FARMINGTON — A new executive director will begin work with the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce on Jan. 2.

Penny Meservier of Farmington stood out as being on board with the goals of the chamber, President Glenn Kapiloff said.

The position, which opened this fall when former director Erin Arthers resigned for personal reasons, drew 20 applicants with competitive skills, Kapiloff said.

“The board appreciates how Penny stepped up to fill in,” he said of her part-time work over the past three months. “She was not intending to work for the chamber but just to help out.”

That time provided a chance for her to get accustomed to the position, Meservier said. The chamber’s board of directors has been helpful and supportive, she said.

After working for five years as an advertising sales associate for the Sun Journal and Franklin Journal, Meservier had come to know a lot of people and local business owners, she said.

Meservier, her husband and two sons moved to Farmington from Mechanic Falls eight years ago. 

She earned a degree in financial services from the University of Maine at Augusta and previously worked for L.L. Bean and as an insurance claim adjuster, she said.

She looks forward to helping current chamber members and meeting new members, she said.

The job includes administrative office work and greeting people in the office, as well as spending time on the road, greeting members and setting up new members, Kapiloff said.

Meservier will plan the chamber’s Business After Hours and other signature events, help current members and work on the annual “Welcome to Franklin County” guide.

The position is for four days a week, Tuesday through Friday, with office hours to be determined, he said. It is a salaried position starting at $26,000.

As president of the chamber, Kapiloff, who assumed the duty as of Dec. 1, hopes to increase the 180-plus members to 200 this year, he said.

As director of the Foster Career and Technical Center on the Mt. Blue Campus, Kapiloff said he is strong on education and believes in promoting a more collective effort between education and business.

He also wants to work with local organizations that have similar interests and motivations to help promote the area, including the Downtown Business Association in Farmington and the Wilton Group.

“I also want to use board members as much as possible,” he said. “It takes more than one person to be successful.”

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