Charlottetown chamber of commerce names new executive director

Dave Stewart
Published on January 19, 2016

Penny Walsh McGuire has been named new executive director of the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce.

©Submitted photo

Penny Walsh McGuire has been named executive director of the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce.

Walsh McGuire will step into her new role on Feb. 8, replacing Kathy Hambly, who announced her retirement late last year.

Hambly will stay on for a period to ensure a smooth transition.

Many Islanders are familiar with Walsh McGuire from her work as executive director of P.E.I. 2014 Inc., the organization that led the 150th anniversary celebrations of the Charlottetown Conference.

“The chamber is excited to have Penny join our team,” said Wendy Drake, president of the chamber.

“Her experience in leadership, marketing and business will prove essential in our continued efforts to promote entrepreneurship in P.E.I., encourage prosperity in our community, and advocate on behalf of our members.”

Walsh McGuire has more than 13 years of experience in both non-profit and corporate organizations. Her roles have included working as vice-president of marketing and partnerships with P.E.I. 2014, chief marketing officer with the Confederation Centre of the Arts and account executive for the advertising agency Young & Rubicam in New York City.

A graduate of UPEI, Walsh McGuire has completed both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business. She also holds a diploma in events and conventions management from Holland College.

Hambly began working with the chamber in 2005 after serving on the board of directors from 1996 to 2004 and as president in 2002.

“My work with the chamber has been so rewarding  that retirement has been a difficult decision,’’ Hambly said back in November. “However, I want to have more time to spend with my family and friends here on Prince Edward Island.’’

During her time with the chamber, Hambly led programs such as Island Advance and P.E.I. Connectors, which encourage economic development in the capital area and the province. In October, Hambly received the Chamber of Commerce Executives of Canada Executive of the Year award for her excellence in contributions, innovation and management.

Drake said Hambly will be missed.

“She engaged staff and volunteers to create a dynamic, progressive chamber committed to providing value to the membership,’’ Drake said.

The chamber of commerce serves as the voice of business on economic issues for more than 975 members representing more than 17,500 employees in small, medium and large enterprises in the capital region.