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The popular word used to describe Kristie Maravalli's tenure as executive director of the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce is "stability."

"There was a lack of leadership before she got into her position," said Damien Golden of iKande Advertising. 

Golden, who joined the chamber when she moved to the area about five years ago, is in her first year on the chamber's board of directors. She said she always found Maravalli to be welcoming and supportive.

Last week, it was announced that Maravalli would resign to take on a new position at the Joshua M. Freeman Foundation, where she'll oversee fundraising efforts. Lauren Weaver moves from events and member relations manager into the executive director seat. The chamber is accepting applications for Weaver's old role through Aug. 18. 

With Maravalli at the helm, the Bethany-Fenwick chamber made great strides since she took the executive director role in January 2014. Bike tour attendance has increased 33 percent, Maravalli said. The chamber restructured its membership, put a strategic plan in place and launched a new website and content management system. 

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"We really made some great strides in the last four years that I’m extremely proud to be a part of,” Maravalli said. “Through the years we’ve done a lot of different things. When I say ‘we,’ it is a we thing here at the chamber. It’s one of the best teams I’ve ever worked on if not the best.”

Weaver, who assumes the role of executive director Monday, is fresh off of maternity leave. But she's not expected to miss a beat. Weaver acted as Maravalli's second in command. She, Maravalli and membership manager Sue Nilsson all started at the chamber within 10 days of each other in 2013, Maravalli said, and they shared the same visions.

"I found them to be an invaluable resource," Golden said. "I’ve been a part of a lot of chambers. It was a refreshing thing to find the Bethany-Fenwick chamber. I wouldn’t be on their board if I didn’t believe that.”

Golden said Weaver possesses the same leadership qualities and "get-it-done" attitude her predecessor has.

For Maravalli, her focus moves to a foundation she says is one of the "benchmarks of business success in our community." Maravalli will be the director of development, helping the foundation that helps provide education in the arts. 

"Change is bittersweet," Maravalli said. "But I believe change needs happen, not only for an organization to grow but for an individual to grow. It was just my time now."

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