As we safely reopen Watkins Glen and all of the Finger Lakes, we look forward to safely welcoming you to our communities. Please remember to call ahead: our restaurants, wineries/breweries/distilleries, and attractions have developed location-specific procedures and protocols to ensure that our community, visitors, and employees remain safe and healthy.

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Career Opening

The Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce is accepting applications for the position of Executive Director.

About Watkins Glen and Schuyler County:

Watkins Glen and Schuyler County are located on the southern shore of beautiful Seneca Lake in the heart of New York's incredible Finger Lakes Region. The Village of Watkins Glen can best be described as the place where Mother Nature meets Main Street. Watkins Glen is located at the southern tip of Seneca Lake and is home to some of the most scenic and iconic sights you could ask for, with Watkins Glen State Park on one end and Seneca Lake on the other. Watkins Glen became internationally known as the host to the first post-World War II, road race. The very village streets that welcome millions of visitors from around the world today are the same over which the green flag dropped on a 6.6-mile course from 1948 to 1952. Watkins Glen State Park is one of the top attractions in New York State. Considered a flagship park by the State of New York, this incredible destination has been leaving visitors spellbound for generations. The Gorge Trail features 19 waterfalls in less than two miles. Watkins Glen International is one of the premier road racing facilities in the world. Located just four miles from downtown Watkins Glen, fans can experience NASCAR, IMSA, and US Vintage Grand Prix Racing, among other exciting events and festivals throughout the season. The Village of Burdett is home to the Finger Lakes National Forest, the only national forest in New York State and one of the only two in the northeast!

Covering over 16,000 acres, this beautifully diverse outdoor haven offers hiking, biking, cross-country skiing, horseback riding, and more. The Town of Hector, situated in northeastern Schuyler County, boasts a mixture of farming activity along with a shift toward rural residential and a tourism-based industry. The Village of Montour Falls was listed on the National Historic Register in 1978 and features a beautiful mix of architectural styles, quaint shops and restaurants, and even its own waterfall! Where West Main Street meets Genesee Street, Montour Falls’ Glorious T is the crowning jewel of this beautiful village. Places of particular interest include the Montour Falls Memorial Library, the domed Montour Falls City Hall, and Shequaga Falls. The Village of Odessa, established in early 1800’s, hosts a variety of businesses including a creamery, beautiful Veterans’ memorial and Events Park as well as Parameter Tires, which all contribute to Odessa’s and the region’s agritourism and economic viability.

The Finger Lakes enjoys an international reputation when it comes to wine. The hills surrounding Seneca Lake are dotted with dozens of wineries. In fact, Seneca Lake is more heavily populated with wineries than any other lake in the state – nearly 70…and counting! The Finger Lakes Beer Trail also winds its way through Schuyler County and the Finger Lakes. Craft beer enthusiasts can try hand-crafted pale ale, amber lager, or any number of specialty offerings at one of the many microbreweries in the region.  Schuyler County is also home to the region’s first standalone distillery and recently, hard cider production has begun to bloom.

From vineyard-covered hillsides to peaceful hiking trails; from bustling shops to a world-renowned race track – Watkins Glen and Schuyler County have something for everyone! Whether you are planning a relaxing vacation, seeking adrenaline-pumping excitement, or something in between, you won’t find a better place to live, work, or make memories than right here!

 

About the Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce

The Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce (the Chamber) is a vibrant and well-respected organization within its community and the Finger Lakes Region. The Chamber serves two very distinct roles – first and foremost, the Chamber holds a long-term agreement with Schuyler County as its Tourism Promotion Agent (TPA). This is the most visible of its roles, as the Chamber operates and staffs two visitor centers in Watkins Glen. The Schuyler County Visitor Center is located in the heart of downtown Watkins Glen and boasts 5,000 square feet and showcases the many tourism attractions that have brought Watkins Glen and Schuyler County national acclaim. In 2018, the second visitor center was opened in partnership with the Watkins Glen State Park which was recognized in its first year by the New York State Tourism Industry Association with the 2018 Tourism Excellence Award. The Chamber’s second role is as the Chamber of Commerce. In this role, the Chamber is proud of its 400+ members and continued growth. Membership includes sole proprietors, small businesses, home businesses, tourism-based businesses, corporations, and non-profits. The Chamber’s mission is to advance economic vitality by providing promotion, education, and support for our members and community; and its vision is to be the leading organization that meets the needs and exceeds the expectations of our business community.

The Chamber is on very solid financial ground and is in its final year of its 2019-2021 Strategic Plan with a likely one-year extension to take into consideration information learned and to be gathered for surviving and thriving through the Pandemic.

The Chamber’s current Executive Director has been with the Chamber for one year and has on contract the previous Executive of the previous 10 years as our accounting and bookkeeping consultant.

For additional information, please visit; www.explorewatkinsglen.com

 

About the Position:

The Executive Director serves under the general direction of the Board of Directors (15) and is responsible for the operation and the general management of the Chamber’s activities and services.

The Executive Director’s major duties and responsibilities shall include the following:

  • Responsible for the financial oversite of the Chamber.
  • Serves as the spokesperson and liaison for the Chamber in all interactions with other groups, organizations and individuals, and the Board of Directors.
  • Responsible for all reporting to the Board of Directors about development, implementation, and accomplishments of all activities conducted by the Chamber as per the programs and goals set by the Board of Directors.
  • Responsible for the creation and management of the Strategic Planning Process.
  • Responsible for the execution of all activities associated with the Chamber including staffing needs for all board-designated committee meetings, scheduling of meetings, development of agendas, and creation and delivery of any necessary meeting materials.
  • Responsible for the management and leadership of all staff within the chamber including interviewing, staff selection, staff training, planning and directing of all staff activity, performance evaluations, performance improvement planning, administration of discipline, and answering all workplace complaints and resolution of problems.
  • Responsible for scheduling and managing all visitor center volunteers.
  • Responsible for managing all activities relative to staffing, logistics, and advertising opportunities at both visitor centers. Full-time staff of 4-5 and Part-time staff of 4-8 (Seasonal).
  • Serves as ex-officio on the Finger Lakes Wine Country and Schuyler County Partnership for Economic Development’s Board of Directors (SCOPED).
  • Serves as the Schuyler County designated TPA (Tourism Promotion Agent) for county and New York State.
  • Responsible for the completion of applications for and management of funding and reporting for all state grant applications (ILoveNY Matching, etc.)
  • Responsible for managing the in-house Tourism Grant process (TAP).
  • Responsible for the development of all partner relations as designated by the Board of Directors.
  • Responsible for the oversite of all programs, contractual obligations, allocation of resources, and effectiveness and efficiencies in overall programing and strategy within the Chamber.

 

Qualifications:

A Bachelor’s degree in Business or related field is preferred. Ideally, the ideal candidate will have a minimum of 3+ years of demonstrated success in a leadership position within a chamber, membership association, or convention and visitor’s bureau/Tourism Promotion Agency or Destination Marketing Organization. The ideal candidate will be highly regarded by their current business community as a leader, innovator, and team player.

The ideal candidate will excel at communicating (oral, written, and formal), public speaking, relationship building, strategic thinking, conflict management, tourism promotion, personnel management, general leadership and multi-tasking. The ideal candidate will also have a basic understanding of a how to read a financial statement and have experience with budget and finance. Knowledge of Simpleview (host to WGACC’s website and Membership data base) preferred, and/or other similar CMS and/or CRM software programs.

 

Compensation and Benefits:

The compensation package will include a competitive salary, determined in part by the successful candidate’s level of professional experience. The Chamber offers a benefit package which includes insurances, matching contributions to an IRA, life insurance, paid vacation, paid sick time and paid holidays, phone reimbursement, etc.

The successful candidate for the Executive Director of the Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce will be required to live in Schuyler County or area once employed (approximately 30 miles/30-minute drive max.).

 

Interested Candidates: submit the following required items:

  1. Resume
  2. Cover letter outlining interest in the position
  3. Salary requirements (within $80-90K range – based on qualifications and experience)

 

Application Deadline: Sept. 3, 2021

 

Email required items to:

Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce

Michael Hardy

Michael@watkinsglenchamber.com

 

-Or -

 

Mail required items to:

Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce Attn: Michael Hardy

214 N. Franklin Street Watkins Glen, NY 14891

 

No phone calls please.