Piper Leslie, executive director of the Ocean Shores/North Beach Chamber of Commerce since January 2017, told the Chamber’s Board of Directors at their Wednesday, May 8, meeting that she is resigning effective July 1.
Leslie told the North Coast News, “It’s become very clear to me in the last few months that some of the public perception of me is that I’m not the right fit for the Chamber.
“So, in the best interest of the Chamber, and my mental health, it’s clear that it’s time for me to step aside and let a new director come in, hopefully with some new vision for how to continue to keep the Chamber relevant.”
A resident of nearby Copalis Crossing, Leslie said she intends to stay through the June 28-30 Sand & Sawdust Festival, also at the Convention Center, because that event “is very important to me, personally, due to the relationships I have with the sponsors and the carvers.”
She intends to remain a familiar face in the area, with plans for starting her own event consulting business, in office space in the same building as the Chamber’s office, at 114 E. Chance a la Mer Blvd.
Leslie said she worked extremely well with former Chamber board president Jeff Daniel, who died Feb. 25 in a surf kayak drowning at the Ocean Shores jetty. “Unfortunately,” she said, “with the loss of Jeff, it’s thrown an entire community off its track.”
Asked to comment on Leslie’s impending departure, the Chamber’s current board president, Jodi Cadle, said, “I am incredibly proud of the things that Piper has done here at the Chamber, and I will forever be in awe of the fortitude that she has shown during her tenure. She has made personal sacrifices to serve the Chamber, and taken much criticism despite her efforts. She came to us at a time that the Chamber was struggling, and has seen it through to the current period of success. I want to extend a voice of gratitude for all of that and more.
“I am completely at peace with her decision, and was thrilled to know that she will still be involved in the community and the Chamber, working where she can to further the causes. She has given us ample time to prepare, and has a renewed vigor in her eyes. We could not ask for more. I look forward to seeing her successes outside of the Chamber!”