Sue Mercer tapped for Chamber top job

NW 29 mercer tapped

NEW CHAMBER EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR — Sue Mercer

 

By Gail Geraghty

Staff Writer

Sue Mercer just wanted to stay busy last September, when she took a job as office manager of the Greater Bridgton Chamber of Commerce.

Little did she know that six months later, she’d not only be managing the office, she’d be running it. 
Mercer has been chosen to become the chamber’s new Executive Director. She replaces Barbara Clark, who resigned after eight months on the job.

“When I started with the chamber, I loved it,” Mercer, 58, said Tuesday. She and her husband, Ed Mercer, bought a second home in Naples in 2005 and became full-time residents in 2010. They relocated from Danvers, Mass., where they began a professional photography business, Mercer Photography, in 1979.

“We’ve been in business for 35 years and we must have done something right, because we’ve got a lot of repeat customers,” said Mercer.

The advent of digital photography, “with everybody thinking they’re a photographer,” lessened demand for their business, she said. Even though they maintain a studio in Danvers and offer online instruction, she found herself with time on her hands. Their three boys, Dan, 22, Bill, 28, and Jim, 27, are all grown. 
“Sue brings with her 35 years of experience as a small business owner, during which time she has honed her financial, organizational and people skills,” states the announcement in this week’s Chamber Chatter.

Clark was great to work with, said Mercer, and she remains in regular phone contact with her as well as Chamber President Madelyn Litz as she takes on the more administrative aspects of the director’s job.

“I’ve met a third of the members so far, and I want to meet many more” in the coming weeks and months, said Mercer. To that end, she is inviting everyone to the Naples studio of Mercer Photography for the next Chamber After Hours on Thursday, Feb. 27, from 5 to 7 p.m. It will be held at the Mercer’s basement studio in their 235 Gore Road home.

The Mercers will give a demonstration of photo retouching and enhancing to the first four people who sign up for a special photography prize. “Don’t miss this opportunity to look like a Hollywood Star!” Mercer wrote in a promo for the event.

By all accounts, Mercer has improved communication and organization at the chamber. She not only provides timely updates of chamber events, but gives members a recap of how each event went, complete with professional photos. 
Mercer said that running the chamber is much like running a business. “And that means getting customers, keeping customers, coming up with good promotions, and trying to keep things organized,” she said.

Mercer said she wants to help businesses in the chamber’s membership region understand that by joining the chamber, they are not only helping themselves, they are helping the whole business community, by enabling the chamber to do its job of promoting business growth in the region.

She’ll be meeting the first week in March with the full board to hash out some short- and long-term goals. One thing seems assured — she wanted to keep busy, and she has gotten her wish.

 

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