Steamboat Chamber names new CEO
Steamboat Springs — The Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association has hired from within and chosen Kara Stoller as its next CEO.
Stoller was serving as the marketing director and filling in as interim CEO since Jim Clark resigned in November.
“I have been at the Chamber for nine years, and I have learned a lot from the various positions I have held,” Stoller said. “I felt with my experience within the organization, and throughout many endeavors in the community, that I was primed for the position, and I wanted to ensure the success of the future of the Chamber.”
There were 53 people who applied for the job. A group of city, county and other community members, including City Manager Gary Suiter, interviewed the three finalists. The group unanimously recommended Stoller for the job.
“She deserved the job,” said Suiter, who formally worked as a consultant to recruit executives. “Won it fair and square.”
Suiter said knowledge of the community and destination markets as well as Stoller’s experience made her stand out.
“With Kara’s appointment as CEO of the Chamber, the executive committee and board look forward to her being able to leverage her intimate knowledge of the organization and the community to achieve our long-term goals,” Chamber board President Dan Pirrallo said.
While at the Chamber, Stoller started the All Arts Festival and OktoberWest events to help draw visitors to town. She was also highly involved in bringing the USA Pro Challenge bike race to Steamboat.
The Chamber touted Stoller’s work in helping improve the city’s sales tax revenues, which increased more than 35 percent in the summer months while Stoller worked as marketing director between 2012 and 2016.
According to the Chamber, Stoller, with the support of the Chamber marketing committee, led the strategic shift to focus destination marketing impacts from mid-summer to time periods with greater opportunity for visitor growth. She was also the driving force behind reallocating marketing funds to be more digitally focused.
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Though the city of Steamboat Springs saw a slight decline in 2020 sales tax revenue as COVID-19 hit Routt County, the city is expected to catch up to its 2019 revenues.