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Meet the Chamber board of directors, team, and community investors.

Wake Forest Area Chamber Team

Liz Simpers Portrait
Liz Simpers

President

Liz has been with the Chamber since February 2020 when she came on board as the Development Director for the Chamber Foundation. In May 2022, she was promoted to President. Prior to the Chamber, she served our community as an elected official, serving on the Wake Forest Board of Commissioners, and in the business sector as the Associate Executive Branch Director for the YMCA of the Triangle where she was responsible for board development and was a key leader in philanthropy and development. 

“This really is my dream job. I’m excited about the impact we’re making in our wonderful community. I plan on living in Wake Forest forever!”

Neosha Smith Portrait
Neosha Smith

Communications Director

Neosha produces all Chamber communications. From emails and newsletters to applications and ads, she does it all. She’s worked in radio, for the NC Education Lottery, and started in Chamber world at the Raleigh Chamber and Wake County Economic Development. A writer who has trained herself to also be a graphic designer, she fell in love with grammar in the fifth grade!

Although she lives in North Raleigh, both Neosha and her husband come to work in Wake Forest every day! Neosha says, “I enjoy the small town feel of Wake Forest and the camaraderie that exists at the Chamber, both between the staff and our members.”

Nancy Franz Portrait
Nancy Franz

Administration/Accounting

Nancy is the first person you'll meet when walking into the Chamber. Need a question answered? She can help!

Nancy also handles accounts receivable and can assist you with your member directory record.

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Corey Hutcherson

Executive Director, Foundation

Corey is the Chamber’s longest tenured employee. Since joining the team, he’s served in membership, community relations and operations. Since 2017 he has spearheaded the work of the Chamber Foundation and is currently its Executive Director. A former teacher, Corey’s passion for youth shows in his work with youth leadership, financial literacy, and career readiness.

A Wake Forest resident with his wife and three young children, Corey feels fortunate that he can work, live, and play all in one great community. Corey says, “With my background in education and my desire to make a difference in the lives of young people, this is the right job for me. I’m excited about the future of our Foundation.”

Carol Fekaris Portrait
Carol Fekaris

Events Specialist

Carol is an organizer at heart. The mother of three adult sons, she honed her skills at a variety of volunteer and administrative jobs as they were growing up. She pulls together Chamber events of all sizes, from Ribbon Cuttings to Expos - and never misses a detail.

A Wake Forest resident for 12 years, she joined the Chamber in December 2017. Carol says, “Being organized and making the ordinary feel special is what I do best.  Wake Forest is a great town and I love our history and its story. Working with our chamber members has shown me that Wake Forest is truly a community.”

Nancy Skelly
Nancy Skelly

Administrative Specialist

Nancy works part-time with our Chamber Foundation and assists with accounting and administrative functions.

Kristen Barrick
Kristen Barrick

Membership Director

Kristen is the Chamber's newest employee, joining the team in July 2022 as Membership Director. With years of engagement and event experience under her belt, Kristen's expertise will guide her in facilitating the Chamber's member retention program, Ambassador program, many of our peer groups, and more. You are sure to see her smiling face at many of our events and programs. Make sure to introduce yourself!

Blanche Taylor Portrait
Blanche Taylor

Sales Manager

Blanche is an experienced membership services manager. She joined the Chamber in 2015 and has been making friends and bringing in new members ever since. With a career in non-profits, she works hard to create a sense of community among our members in the Chamber.

A resident of North Raleigh, she travels into the Town of Wake Forest regularly. She’s also the proud mother of a student at Wake Forest University! Blanche says, “I absolutely love having the opportunity to meet so many amazing people on a daily basis. I have made wonderful friends as a result of my role at the Chamber!”

Board of Directors

Gordon Coleman - Chair

Owner
GCJ Productions
(252) 903-2314

Charlie Hamaty

Owner
Charlie's Kabob Grill
(919) 554-0938

Annette Rhodes

Attorney
Rhodes Law Firm, PLLC
919-435-3646 

Peter Kima - Vice Chair

Broker/Owner
Kima Real Estate Group
(919) 609-6777

Carter Harrell

Senior Vice President
Wake Forest Federal
(919) 556-5146

June Sadowski

Vice President
North State Bank
(919) 719-1772

Bryan Miller - Treasurer

Branch Manager
Truist
(919) 556-6961

Ryan Hutchinson

Executive VP for Operations
Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
(919) 761-2200

Keith Shackleford

Attorney
Warren, Shackleford, and Thomas Attorneys P.L.L.C.
(919) 556-5198

Shelley Welch - Secretary

REALTOR/Broker
Next Stage Realty
919-760-7363

Erica Pittman

Business Development VP
Fidelity Bank
(919) 556-2021

Keith Wallace

Operations & Business Development
Merritt Properties
(919) 526-0070

Joe Kimray - Past Chair

Manager
B & W Hardware Co.
(919) 556-3562

Dino Radosta

Owner
APC Holdings
(919) 562-4248x11

Shyrl Wood

Pinnacle Financial Partners
(919) 985-7574

Community Champions

Community Leaders

Community Advocate

Community Partners

Community Builders

Businesses in bold type are Integrated Investors. They support both the Chamber and its charitable Foundation.

Alger Financial
Allen Tate Realtors
Atlantic Tire & Service
B & W Hardware Co.
Capital Powersports
Carolina Hurricanes
Duke Raleigh Hospital

Fidelity Bank
Focus Design Builders LLC
Goldfish Swim School
Granite Construction Services, Inc.
Heritage Golf Club/1250 Heritage Club Restaurant
Modern Day Electric, LLC
NEAT NC

The Sutherland
WakeMed
Wake Forest Federal
White Street Brewing Company

Wake Forest Information

Below are some quick facts about Wake Forest. For complete details on all aspects of living in Wake Forest, visit the Wake Forest Economic Development website. This site includes a variety of community data, including population, education, cost of living, taxes, recreation, arts and culture, industry, major employers, and more.

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Population

Wake Forest: 45,260
Wake County: 1,092,305

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Climate

Average annual temperature: 60.8 degrees
Annual precipitation: 46.68 inches

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Healthcare

World-renowned healthcare providers, including WakeMed Health & Hospitals, UNC Rex Healthcare, and Raleigh Duke Hospital.

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Education

• Award-winning Wake County K-12 public education system (WCPSS) with 48 Magnet school programs, 28 NC STEM designated schools, 18 Career Academies, 2 single-gender Leadership Academies, and 3 Early College programs

• 84 private schools in Wake County serve over 17,589 students, and 20 Charter Schools granted through the WCPSS

• Three top-tier research universities are within close proximity: North Carolina State University (Raleigh), Duke University (Durham), and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Chapel Hill)

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Education

• Award-winning Wake County K-12 public education system (WCPSS) with 48 Magnet school programs, 28 NC STEM designated schools, 18 Career Academies, 2 single-gender Leadership Academies, and 3 Early College programs

• 84 private schools in Wake County serve over 17,589 students, and 20 Charter Schools granted through the WCPSS

• Three top-tier research universities are within close proximity: North Carolina State University (Raleigh), Duke University (Durham), and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Chapel Hill)

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Transportation

Wake Forest is a short distance away from I-95, I-85 and I-40 providing major thoroughfares to all of the key destinations up and down the East Coast and across the region. Raleigh-Durham International (RDU) Airport serves the region.

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Outdoor Activities

Enjoy a wide array of outdoor activities including golfing, hiking, cycling, fishing, boating, swimming and more. The 30,000-acre Falls Lake Recreation Area is minutes away!

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Quality of Life

Wake Forest has 561 acres of local parks, open space, and natural land and trails, which includes five baseball/softball fields, three soccer fields, one pool, six picnic areas, eight playgrounds, eight lighted tennis courts, a dog park, the Wake Forest Community House, Flaherty Park and Joyner Park Community Centers, and more than six miles of greenway trails.

Interested in cultural amenities and events? A plethora take place in Wake Forest: Friday Night on White (April-September), Farmer’s Market, Six Sundays in Spring concerts at Joyner Park, Mardi Gras Street Festival, Holiday Open House, Historic Home Tour, Meet in the Street arts and crafts festival, ARTS Wake Forest events, Forest Moon Community Theater, Wake Forest Renaissance Centre programming and more!

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