Chamber tabs Shelli Robb-Kahler as new executive director

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Sequim Gazette staff

Sequim-native Shelli Robb-Kahler, 49, is the new executive director of the Sequim-Dungeness Valley Chamber of Commerce.


She replaces popular executive director Vickie Maples who announced her resignation after 2½ years on Feb. 10 to deal with family issues. Robb-Kahler begins April 4 while Maples finishes on April 15.


“I look forward to working with the chamber board of directors, the local business community and the staff and volunteers of the chamber,” Robb-Kahler said.


“I feel exceedingly honored to represent the chamber and can’t think of a more enjoyable way to continue my career than working with the businesses, citizens and leaders of this wonderful community in which we are blessed to reside.”


Robb-Kahler recently held the role of vice president and business development officer at First Federal before the economic downturn resulted in a downsizing of her job. Her banking career spans 30 years. She was enrolled in the medical assistant program at Peninsula College as a new career.


Maples said Robb-Kahler is a great fit for the chamber and brings a lot of experience and organization to the chamber with her extensive history working with local businesses and commercial banking.


A selection committee of five chamber members — Christy Rookard, board president; Jean Wyatt, vice-president; Scott Clausen, secretary-treasurer; Bill Littlejohn, past president; and Joe Borden, board member — selected Robb-Kahler. Maples was not involved in interviews.


They saw Robb-Kahler’s experience in the financial field, networking abilities and customer-service skills as assets to the chamber as it pursues growth in membership services and programs.


“As a nonprofit dedicated to serving the business community of the Sequim-Dungeness Valley area, the chamber board was seeking someone with a unique combination of skills and experience to be responsive to the needs of the Chamber membership,” said Rookard.


“(Robb-Kahler’s) professional background and personal skills provide us with that combination and the board is looking forward to working closely with her as we continue to strengthen the role of the chamber in service to our members and the community.”


She serves on the executive board of directors of the Clallam County YMCA and previously volunteered as a committee chairman for the United Way of Clallam County. Robb-Kahler is married and the mother of two sons Brady Robb, 25, and Colin Kahler, 19. She graduated from Sequim High School in 1979 and has been away from the city for only two years since.


Robb-Kahler oversees chamber functions and the Sequim Visitor Center.


An open house/meet-and-greet with Robb-Kahler runs 4-6 p.m. Tuesday, April 5, at the Sequim Dungeness Chamber of Commerce, 1192 E. Washington St. Contact the chamber at 683-6197.


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