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Wilkinson accredited, one of few in Arizona

KINGMAN - Pam Wilkinson recently joined an elite group of chamber of commerce professionals in the West. The Western Association of Chamber Executives recognized her as an accredited executive.

"This is a big deal," sad Dave Kilby, president and CEO of the association. "Pam is one of 47 people to be accredited out of 800 members."

Wilkinson, the executive director of the Kingman Chamber of Commerce, had to meet "stringent criteria," said Kilby. "She had to go through a five-year period in her professional development training and the chamber has to have components in place to earn the (designation)."

Wilkinson was one of nine executives to be accredited at the association's annual conference in Burlingame, Calif., last week.

She has been the director of the 483-member Kingman Chamber of Commerce for two years. She has been in the chamber business for a decade.

"The designation shows I'm striving to be the best that I can be," said Wilkinson. "It represents that I'm doing my best."

Wilkinson said that because of the classes she took and the qualifications she earned, she's more confident and has a better understanding of what the best practices are in managing chambers of commerce.

"I also have a network of experts to rely on now," she said. "No matter what the issues are, somebody will be able to help me."

Kilby said the accreditation program was established in 1993 to raise the bar for chamber executives.

"We thought we shouldn't allow chamber of commerce professionals to become complacent," he said.

To that end, the group established the continuing education program. Wilkinson and other designees will have to get reaccredited every five years in order to retain the status.

"This is a big deal for Kingman," said Kilby. "Pam worked hard to get that designation. She's one of a small handful to get it in the whole state of Arizona."


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