Peterson optimistic as new president of board of trade

A new president has an optimistic outlook for Stettler Regional Board of Trade and Community Development and economic growth in the area.

“We expect it’s going to be a busy and exciting year for the board of trade with new activities,” said Gail Peterson, who was elected president at the board of trade’s annual general meeting Feb. 9.

“Our biggest goal is to promote our community as a great place to live, do business, play and visit.”

“If we can continue to build on activities that the community wants, that will certainly be positive for the community,” said Peterson who became interim president last fall to fill a vacancy.

“We have several businesses who consider locating in the Stettler area,” said Peterson, serving for over 30 years with Alberta Employment and Immigration office in Stettler serving as career and employment consultant and business and industry liaison.

Others elected to the board were vice-president Wayne Tebbe, past-president Kelly Hicks, directors Don Lynn, Henry Johnson, Edna Stuart and Darrin Bosomworth along with municipal representatives that include Town of Stettler Councilor Leona Thorogood, County of Stettler economic development officer Shawna Benson, Wayne Garrison of the Village of Big Valley, board of trade executive director Keith Ryder and executive assistant Gwenda Gravely.

Plans to enhance and add business and essential services are top priorities for the board of trade.

“We are well located in Alberta for service and shopping and to attract businesses and people from other areas,” said Peterson.

“One new business owner told me that Stettler is a gem.”

“Currently the town has an excellent inventory of housing opportunities and with our strengthened medical services and excellent community facilities in education, culture and recreation we have definite assets to promote.”

Several annual and ongoing projects keep the board of trade busy to build the community.

“Space for our 30th annual trade show April 9 to 11 is 90 per cent sold out so that will be a great event to showcase our region.”

Adding health services and key personnel continues to be high on the list.

“Physician recruitment is always a high priority for the board of trade,” said Peterson.

A stronger economy in the region is projected by the board of trade.

To help build business and tourism, the board of trade works closely as a member of several economic and community partners that serve the wider central Alberta region.

To further promote Stettler area, the board of trade will soon unveil a new video of the region and and upgraded website.

“We will continue to work with town administration to produce a professional and well-thought-out strategic plan for the future,” said Ryder who served as the town’s mayor from 1995 to 2004.