Gretchen Williams leaves position, interim office administrator named to fill spot

WilliamsJust over a year after being hired as the the South Columbia County Chamber of Commerce's visitors center representative, Gretchen Williams has stepped down from the position.

News of Williams' departure was announced through an email newsletter, stating that she left the position to pursue other career opportunities effective March 10.

Poppy Elshaug is taking over as interim office administrator at the chamber and visitors center in Williams' absence.

"It is with mixed feelings that I share with you that Gretchen Williams is leaving us. While we are sad to see her go, we are excited for her as she steps in a new career direction," the chamber newsletter stated. "This is a great opportunity for her and we wish her only the best. Gretchen has been indispensable to us and has grown the Visitors Center from a concept to a valued community asset."

Williams could not be reached for comment by the Spotlight's press time.

Over the past year, Williams has taken on numerous responsibilities as the visitor's center representative, including helping organize a summer art walk involving local businesses and assisting visitors during the Spirit of Halloweentown events in October. Williams was instrumental in helping orchestrate the citywide parade on the opening weekend of the month.

During a recap meeting after October, Williams briefly faced some criticism for negative comments she made online regarding the city's contracted event planner who primarily planned the Halloweentown events, but stated she was not going anywhere and was passionate about improving the involvement of business owners.

According to the St. Helens Economic Development Corp.'s website, Williams is also the business development committee chair and treasurer for the group.

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