A former Holland America Line sales and marketing manager has been named to head the Kenai Chamber of Commerce.
Tina Baldridge, who had been with the cruise ship line and its subsidiary Gray Line of Alaska for seven consecutive seasons, is the new executive director of the chamber, replacing Janie Odgers, who left to become state director for Alaska March of Dimes.
On departing for the March of Dimes post, Odgers said she would be back soon "to visit friends and family and to hit you all up for this worthy cause."
The organization specializes in improving the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.
Baldridge, who had been working as the destination marketing and membership manager for the Kenai Convention and Visitors Bureau until June, moved to Kenai in October 2006 after her husband took a job in Kenai.
Raised in the Fairbanks area, Baldridge, 26, attended the University of Alaska-Fairbanks before transferring to Anchorage where she completed her education at the University of Alaska-Anchorage. She has a bachelor's degree in journalism and public communications with an emphasis in public relations and advertising.
Having started with the Kenai chamber Oct. 29, she said she is still going through the organizing process, working to streamline inter-office procedures.
"The focus right now is on Christmas Comes to Kenai (Nov. 23)," Baldridge said. "Then we've got the awards banquet and then elections. The chamber has been very welcoming and we've certainly got our hands full."
When asked if she planned to remain in her new position for the long term, Baldridge said, "Absolutely."
Phil Hermanek can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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