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Pearson starts new job as Ogdensburg chamber executive director

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Wednesday was day three for Laura J. Pearson in her new capacity as executive director of the Greater Ogdensburg Chamber of Commerce.

In between a steadily ringing telephone and consulting with her predecessor, Sandra M. Porter, she’s realized there is a bit of a learning curve to deal with.

But there is nothing insurmountable.

“There’s a lot to learn,” Mrs. Pearson, 52, said as she prepared for her first Chamber Board of Directors luncheon meeting on Wednesday.

Mrs. Pearson, of Ogdensburg, comes to the Chamber from Inverness Technologies at Fort Drum. There, she worked as an employment training specialist to help teach soon-to-be ex-soldiers job interview and resume-writing skills. She also has experience in events planning and fundraising for the Ogdensburg Area Zonta Club, the former Mater Dei College and the State University of New York Research Foundation.

Mrs. Porter, 73, is retiring. She has been the Chamber’s executive director since September 2006. Mrs. Pearson said she appreciates her assistance in familiarizing her with the new Chamber duties.

“Sandy has been just awesome,” she said.

Mrs. Pearson said she looks forward to working closely with the board of directors to advance the Chamber’s activities. Looking ahead to next year, she is already impressed that the Chamber will sponsor or be affiliated with 31 events in all 12 months. They include the GreenMarket farmers market, the North Country Wine, Beer and Food Festival, the Boys and Girls Club Expo, River Shiver, Car-B-Que, the Sportsmen’s Show and Ogtoberfest.

“If it isn’t broke, I’m not going to fix it,” Mrs. Pearson said.

Mrs. Pearson said her first order of business in the new year will be to oversee the organization’s annual winter membership drive. The chamber has more than 200 dues-paying business and individual members.

There is always a need, Mrs. Pearson said, to not just maintain but also beef up the roster.

“My goal is to renew everybody and get new members,” she said.

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