Chamber aims to attract more young professionals

Published 11:30 pm Tuesday, July 19, 2011

FRANKLIN—The Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce hopes to increase the activity of younger members.

The chamber will introduce a young professionals group for those 21 to around 40 for networking and attracting young talent to the area. The first meeting — a mixer — is planned for August.

“It’s kind of building on and enhancing what we’ve already been doing,” said Chamber President Kevin Sutton.

The group will look at ways to attract and keep young professionals in the Franklin-Southampton area.

“I really think it’s something the Franklin-Southampton area needs,” Sutton said.

The group has been considered for some time, but an infusion of youth on the organization’s executive board helped put the idea in motion, the 35-year-old said.

The group’s steering committee has received advice from the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce, which started a similar group.

“I’m very excited about it,” said Teresa Beale, executive director of the Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce. “It has been gaining momentum.”

In addition to networking opportunities, the group will help out in the community, including with the public schools, Sutton said.

“We want to be able to do anything we can offer to help with the education of our emerging workforce,” he said.

Those interested should call 562-4900.