BRANDON, FL – The Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors is pleased to announce that Laura Mills Simpson has been designated to lead the Chamber as the organization’s new President and CEO. Simpson had been serving in those roles on an interim basis since June 7, 2013 when the Chamber’s long term President and CEO, Tammy Bracewell, stepped down from the position and now works on special projects for the organization.
Laura Simpson began her career in the Chamber of Commerce profession in 1998 as an Administrative Assistant at The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce in Lakeland, Florida. After gaining valuable chamber experience and graduating with her Bachelor of Arts Degree from Warner Southern College (1999), Laura accepted a position as Vice President of The Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce in March 2000, and has served in critical leadership and managerial roles with the Chamber since joining the organization.
“Through my work with chambers of commerce, I have found an outlet for using my strengths, skills and interests, including getting involved in my community, creative writing, political activism and event coordination,” Simpson said. “It is not only the job I do every day, but it involves a lot of the skill sets and interests I find enjoyable.”
At the beginning of her career with the Brandon Chamber, Simpson’s focus was primarily on executing specials events. After proven success in that area, her role in the Chamber evolved and greatly expanded to include such diverse and critical Chamber responsibilities as spearheading the Chamber’s community and economic development initiatives, government relations, membership engagement, and overall program management.
“I look forward to growing personally and professionally with The Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Brandon community,” Simpson added. “I have been privileged to serve over the past 13 years with many business and community leaders in Brandon. It truly is an honor to continue to serve the business community in my new capacity.”
When asked about her focus areas for the Chamber, Simpson identified area economic development, the need to showcase and continually enhance the value of Chamber membership to both current and prospective members, fostering relationships between members, helping members make key strategic business contacts, developing innovative initiatives to help members grow their business, and ultimately serving as an ambassador for the greater Brandon community.
“After three fantastic months of confirming that Laura was the perfect choice for the position, the executive committee and board of directors unanimously approved her new role,” stated Darren Denington, Chairman of the Board, adding that, “The current positive energy in the organization is extremely exciting right now.”
“I love what I do and am fulfilled through my work; therefore, it never feels like a job. In that, I am truly blessed,” stated Simpson. Laura Simpson is a sixth generation native Floridian from Bartow, Florida, with deep roots throughout Polk, Hillsborough, and Manatee Counties. Laura is married to Ben Simpson and has two daughters, Morgan (11) and Jordan (8), who keep her very active as a soccer and PTA mom.