Executive Director, Patty Brown, Announces She Will Be Leaving the Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce
October 21, 2020—The Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors announced today that Executive Director, Patty Brown will be leaving as of December 31, 2020. Board Chair, Ross Lexvold states, “It’s going to be difficult to replace Patty. Looking back over our records, we think she may have the longest tenure of any Executive Director in the Red Wing Chamber’s history since this organization was established in 1915…that’s quite a run and accomplishment! Patty will be assisting with the process of hiring her replacement along with the transition and training of the new person. We’re excited for Patty in her next chapter of life and really want to thank her for all that she has done for the Chamber and the business community. We look forward to what the future holds for the next leader of the Red Wing Area Chamber.” The Board will begin the search process for a new Executive Director immediately.
Brown took over as the Interim Director in September of 2009 and was named the Executive Director in January 2010. Brown states, “I walked into an empty office because all of the previous administration had been dismissed. The first year was a tough challenge because the organization was in a very challenged financial position and there were many relationships that needed mending. I am very proud of what we’ve been able to do over the last 11 ½ years. I’ve had an excellent staff, Board Members, Ambassadors, Volunteers and support from the business community that has helped to rebuild the Chamber’s reputation and grow it into a strong and reputable organization that supports our business community.
Brown states, “I’m excited about returning to the real estate market with my husband, spending more time with my family and grandchildren and pursuing other interests which require me to have a more flexible schedule. My involvement with the Red Wing Area Chamber stems back to the early 1980s when I was working at Red Wing Business Systems/Software. I stayed active as I operated my public relations agency (Creative Communications 1999-2009) and while I was a licensed Realtor (2004-2009). I plan to remain active with the Chamber, but it will be in a different capacity.”
Brown cites some of the major accomplishments during her tenure as: Adding over 430 new members to the Chamber with a 95% retention rate; creating the weekly Chamber ENews newsletter; the MN/WI Bridge Project; earning the Red Wing Chamber a spot for several years on the MN Business Journal Top 25 Chambers in MN; creating the Main Event Committee which assisted businesses during the 2015 & 2016 reconstruction of Highway 61/Main Street through the City; the Small Business Revolution in 2016/2017 which brought national recognition and a second-place win for Red Wing; hosting over 1,000+ Recognition Events/Grand Openings/Ribbon Cutting Events for Red Wing area businesses along with numerous business networking events; establishing a Young Professionals (HYPE) organization; creating the Manufacturing Month Celebration in Red Wing; the Inaugural Voyage Celebration of the American Duchess Riverboat in 2017; the 2014 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree Project in Red Wing; the resurgence of River City Days; and assistance with numerous construction projects in Red Wing including the Riverfront Trail and Levee Road; Levee Wall Reconstruction; 3rd & Bush Street Construction; Downtown Lighting Project; and Old West Main and Bay Point Park reconstruction.
Brown is currently serving on the following Boards and Committees: Red Wing Bridge Project Communications Team; Red Wing Bridge Project Dedication Committee; Red Wing Area Manufacturers Association; MN State Advanced Manufacturing Statewide Tour Committee (Formerly Dream It, Do IT!); Red Wing Economic Development Partners; Women’s Leadership Event; MN State College Southeast President’s Advisory Board; Red Wing High School Flight Path Steering Committee; Red Wing High School District Advisory Committee; Future Forward Career Navigator Committee; Port Authority Sign, Awning & Façade Committee; Red Wing Covid Response Team; HYPE---Helping Young Professionals Emerge; Electric Vehicle Charging Station Committee; YMCA Board of Trustees; and is a liaison on the Visitor & Convention Bureau and Downtown Main Street. Brown is a member of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Executives; Hiawatha Valley Society for Human Resource Management; Red Wing Elks Lodge #845; and United Lutheran Church. She has served on numerous other Boards and committees during her tenure.
Brown was inducted in the Women’s Network Hall of Fame in 2019; was a Nominee for the Red Wing Business & Professional Woman of the Year 2016 and 2014; and featured in the April 2015 issue of Today Magazine. She is a 2012 Blandin Community Leadership Graduate and a 1992 Leadership Red Wing Graduate. Brown has a Business Administration & Marketing Bachelor’s Degree from Winona State University.
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