"Lexington is a friendly town, so when a stray kitten found us a couple of weeks ago, it didn’t take us long to decide what to do,” says Randy Halfacre, the Chamber’s president and CEO. “We adopted him.”
After about a week of vigorous Facebook debate about what to name him, the gray tabby was christened Mister Chambers. His duties include – besides sleeping, eating, and swatting toy mice – welcoming visitors and promoting Chamber events.
Meanwhile, two human employees are getting acclimated to the Chamber’s relaxed – yet busy – atmosphere. Tracy Fredrychowski, a veteran graphic artist and web designer, is the Chamber’s new website database manager. She’s developing the Chamber’s website presence by creating site promotions and online outreach campaigns, designing ad slicks and banner ads, emailing newsletters, and coaching members about the chamber’s upgraded website. Aida Rogers, a former newspaper and magazine writer and editor, is the visitors and information coordinator. Besides greeting the public and informing newcomers about the area, she’s writing press releases and writing and editing website content. “Tracy’s modern computer experience and Aïda’s old-fashioned public relations and more information-gathering skills create a Chamber and Visitors Center that accurately reflects Lexington as a progressive community that still has a small-town feel,” Halfacre says. “I am extremely fortunate to have both here working to move our chamber to heights unexpected just months ago.”
Fredrychowski, a Pennsylvania native, and Rogers, a Lexington native, represent the blending of old and new Lexington. Fredrychowski arrived here in 2003 and immediately joined the chamber, becoming an ambassador and serving on numerous committees and on the board. Within one week at the Chamber, Rogers greeted her father’s high school classmate, her seventh-grade teacher’s daughter, and her fourth-grade teacher’s husband, who himself had been taught by her own mother, Maro Rogers, in high school. Angela Halfacre, Randy Halfacre’s wife, taught Rogers in fifth grade. “Lexington’s grown, just like the old-timers say, but it’s still a small town,” Rogers observes. “Funny how I grew up but they didn’t.”
“Promoting Lexington-area businesses is our first priority, and part of that is extending a friendly welcome to new companies and visitors as well as old friends,” Halfacre notes. “Having Tracy, Aïda, and Mister Chambers on board helps us achieve that goal. And now, with Mister Chambers, I finally have another guy in the office to commiserate with.”