Editor’s note: Due to a production error, we inadvertently published the incorrect logo with this monthly column. It is republished in its entirety here.

This was a year of significant change for The Barre Partnership. In November 2018, The Partnership was without an executive director and struggling to keep up with its responsibilities with only four active board members. This small but dedicated group worked through several challenges and setbacks and after months of interviews. The board hired a new executive director, Tracie Lewis, in May 2019. In a short six months, Lewis, with her enthusiastic and positive nature, has brought an upbeat vibe to Barre that many are talking about.

“There is so much energy and excitement happening in Barre right now,” says Valerie Beaudet White, owner of Ladder 1 Grill and Moruzzi’s. Valerie became a member of The Barre Partnership in November for the first time, with Ladder 1 Grill being a proud sponsor of the new Barre Holiday House Decorating Contest. If anyone knows Valerie, they know she knows how to decorate a place for any holiday.

This November, four enthusiastic volunteers were elected to the executive committee of The Barre Partnership. With experience in local government, the private sector, nonprofit management and what it takes to run a successful downtown business, they all have a passion for helping to revitalize Barre. A hearty thanks to their dedication to The Barre Partnership and the Barre community.

Rich Morey, president: Rich has lived in Barre since 2009 with his wife and their six kids while also serving on City Council since 2018. His background in sales throughout Central Vermont over the last 15 years has given him perspective on community and business needs that he hopes to leverage with the Partnership. With all the new development and growth within the city and downtown, Rich is excited and looks forward to being at the front of the continued ascent of Barre.

David Gold, vice president: Dave moved to Vermont in 1991. After spending 23 years working for IBM, he decided to leave the corporate world and work more directly with people. He has been serving Barre for the past five years as a financial adviser. Dave grew up in a city much like Barre. His hometown went from a thriving blue-collar working town, through economic decline, and has since experienced a vibrant rebirth. Since he opened his office downtown, Dave has been passionate about doing whatever he can to contribute to the revitalization of the Barre area. Dave is an eternal optimist who loves the people of Barre and looks forward to being a part of this community for his second 23-year career.

Susan McDowell, secretary: Susan has lived within walking distance of Barre’s downtown for close to 30 years. Her resume includes experience working at both for-profit and nonprofit corporations in Central Vermont and she is skilled in organizing ideas to build solutions. She has been an office manager, sales manager, and content manager for a handful of small enterprises. Among the many assets Barre has to leverage – its history, heritage, art, and culture – Susan notes that Barre’s strong sense of community can’t be overlooked. She is thrilled to have witnessed the recent transformation of the downtown and is looking forward to contributing to the continued progress.

Justin Pecor, treasurer: Justin grew up in Burlington and moved to Barre in 2012. Since graduating from Castleton in 2000 with a degree in sports administration, Justin has held only a handful of jobs as he tends to stick with those companies he believes in. Justin’s work and family experiences have led him to where he is today. Justin has grown to love the little city of Barre enough to set down his roots, buy a restaurant, with his wife Melissa, and has become a well-known member of the community. Justin’s work ethic and dedication to his family, friends, and business make him someone anyone can relate to. Ask him about craft beer, Jimmy Buffett, basketball, youth soccer, or business and you will have a friend for life.

The Partnership’s Board of Directors are imperative to helping the organization meet its mission and the Partnership’s seven board members are up to the task. Veterans Mary Jane Magnan, Cynthia Naess Duprey and Michael Waggoner bring years of history and knowledge of both Barre and The Partnership to the Board. While new members Timothy Boltin, Anita Hoy, Phayvanh Luekhamhan and Chandra Pollard are bringing in new ideas and energy to The Barre Partnership as we look forward to a productive 2020.

The Partnership also is looking for dedicated community members who will volunteer to work at our events and help further our mission: “To stimulate and sustain economic development in Barre’s historic downtown, ensuring a vibrant community that is the social, cultural and economic hub of the greater Barre area.”

Whether joining a committee or working at an event, volunteers are always needed. If you would like to become a volunteer, please contact Tracie at The Barre Partnership at director@thebarrepartnership.com

With an amazing board and enthusiastic executive director, you can expect great things from The Barre Partnership in the year to come. Follow The Barre Partnership on Facebook to stay up to date with all things Barre.

Tracie Lewis is executive director of the Barre Partnership.

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