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Norman assumes duties as chamber board chairman

Joby Norman has been on the board of directors for the Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce since 1980. Now as newly elected chairman of the board, Norman says he is looking forward to helping Greenville and Butler County face some of it's challenges head on.

"Unemployment is the biggest problem we face, but I thing we're going to see at least some relief from that within the next year," Norman said. "I would also like to see some jobs come into this community where kids can go off to college and be able to come back here to work."

Norman said the chamber will work closely with the Butler County Commission for Economic Development, and play whatever role necessary to assist in attracting industry and business to the area.

"We have always had a good relationship with Ricky McLaney's office, and he tries to involve us in his activities," he said. "We certainly want to continue working with him and provide whatever support we can."

Norman said that while the chamber's primary area of concern is developing commerce and retail business, he also believes the chamber should concentrate on developing strong community health.

"If we can play some kind of role in improving the quality of life in the community I think we will be a success," he said. "And, if we are able to improve commerce here then we will improve the quality of life."

Norman, who is a graduate of Greenville High School and attended the University of Alabama where he studied business and accounting, is currently vice president of People's Bank. He said the main difference between the incoming chamber board and previous boards lies in its diversity.

"This board is made up of representatives from all different sectors of the business community, but we are primarily concerned with commerce and promoting retail business in the area," he said. "At one time we had a much smaller board that didn't get very much accomplished, but recently we have had more of the business community represented and I think we are able to do a better job."

Norman said a primary goal of the new chamber should be to increase its value to the members. He said an attention to marketing the area should be a top priority.

"I think we should dedicate more of our annual budget to selling Greenville as a good place to do business," he said. "I think the more we try to sell Greenville, the more we will be able to do for our members."