ELLINWOOD — After six years, former Ellinwood director Nancy Baird has resigned and is turning over the reins to a new director the first of September. She has enjoyed her work there and is passionate about Ellinwood’s success.
“I got a true sense of why it is some important to shop locally and how it filters down,” said Nancy. “I saw the importance of small towns working together.”
“I’ve gained some great friendships,” she said, which are an added plus.
Nancy says she gained so much from the chamber position. She said a one time she was nervous about presenting in front of group, but now she is quite comfortable talking to groups.
“I’m more comfortable with marketing,” she said. “It’s been fantastic and made me grow as a person.”
“I want good things to happen,” said Baird.
She feels her greatest contribution has been keeping up-to-date on social media.
“Six years ago, when I started, Facebook had not caught on,” Baird said. She uses it extensively to keep enthusiasm high for events. “I get five friendship requests a day,” for the Ellinwood Facebook page.
“It’s such a great evolution,” Baird added. “I can send reminders of activities.”
For six years, Baird has held three jobs including, recreation department director for the city, the chamber and insurance assistant at Doll Insurance. Despite her busy schedule, she has organized the After Harvest Festivals, chamber coffees and after hours, as well as other activities.
But AHF was her favorite. “AHF has such a history and is the economic backbone of the chamber.”
She is now cutting back on working and will be the full-time office manager for Doll Insurance Group. She will be the city’s recreation director until March when the newly appointed full-time recreation director takes over, and will then be down to one job.
“It is a time of my life to not be so busy,” Nancy said.
“Nancy has done an outstanding job in her six years as the director,” said Lloyd Kurtz, president of the chamber. “We wish her the very best in her new job.”
“Most people know that Ellinwood experienced significant flooding last Sunday,” said new Director J. Basil Dannebohm. “However, most people don’t know that Nancy and her family cut short their vacation so they could come back and lend a hand. She doesn’t look for recognition; she simply has a passion for her community. That passion shows forth in everything she does, it inspires others to appreciate their community. Her enthusiasm for Ellinwood is ultimately what led me to apply for the position that will fill her shoes - and they will be tough to fill.
“Nancy has been instrumental in bringing the chamber to where it is today,” Dannebohm said. “Her hard work, creativity and can-do spirit make it easy for me to transition into this role. She’s paved the way for me.
“While Nancy is moving on to a new chapter in her career, I know that she will be one of those special people you’ll always find on the front lines volunteering for the good of Ellinwood,” he added.
Nancy has two children Bailey and Kaden and is married to her husband Kris who is a farmer. She is looking forward to having more down time and to do activities as a family.