New chamber of commerce leader discusses his plans

February 5, 2009

By Jim Feehan

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Nick Sooy (pronounced soy) was named chairman of the chamber in November. For the past four years, he has served on the board of directors. Last year, he was treasurer.

Nick Sooy

Nick Sooy

Sooy, 34, was born and raised in Seattle. He graduated from Kennedy High School in Burien, and Central Washington University with a degree in business administration. Sooy has lived in Newcastle since 2001 with his wife Trina and their two children, Kayla, 2, and Trevor, 1.

He works as an insurance agent for Farmers Insurance Agency. Prior to that, Sooy worked in the hotel industry for eight years. He enjoys golf, music, exercise and following local sports teams. 

Newcastle News caught up with Sooy and asked what he has in store.

 

What’s your goal for 2009?

My main goal is to continue to raise the interest level. Our membership is upwards of 75 members, about 70 more than five years ago. I think providing opportunities for members to promote their businesses will be an important way to go about this, especially in this slow economy. 

Having more dynamic, well-known speakers at our monthly luncheons is something I would like to explore. This way we can create more awareness for the chamber. If a local resident or business owner can come to one of our lunch meetings and meet someone they may not have access to on an everyday basis. 

 

Explain what the chairman’s duties and responsibilities are compared with the chamber president’s roles?

With recent growth, there’s a need to implement the chairman position, so more responsibilities can be delegated. The president used to be the face of the chamber, run the board and lunch meetings. This responsibility will now fall to the chairman. The president’s responsibilities will be some paperwork, updating our membership roster and coordinating attendance of speakers. 

 

Anything different chamber   members should expect?

I have great respect for past presidents Lisa Jensen, Nancy Carlstrom, John Jensen and Linda Stemler, as well as Jim Price and Giles Velte, who kept the chamber afloat many years back. I want to continue to build on their efforts, but at the same time, with my little spin. I would like it to be more transparent. 

Members should be more aware of who is on the board, roles they fill and especially how the Newcastle chamber is different than other chambers. Members should see the chamber as a way to assist in promoting their business more.


Why should I join the chamber?

Because it is a minimal investment of time and resources. Membership is $30 for individuals and $50 for a business. You’ll get to know residents who truly care about the community and local business owners. Many city councilors attend our meetings, so it’s a great way to get to know them and communicate what’s important to you.

 

What do you enjoy most about living in Newcastle?

I feel it is a safe place to raise a family. I love the size of it. Big enough in that many amenities are near and at the same time, small enough where you get to know many of the citizens.

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