Gainesville Daily Register

Local News

May 30, 2010

One-on-One with Kristi Rigsby

Gainesville — What are your plans for the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce over the next year?

My first priority here is to focus on the memberships of the Chamber. There are already many members, approximately 465 at this time, and I want to get out and visit with each and every one of them and find out what they would like to see happen and what Gainesville can do for them. I am a realist and know that I cannot make everyone happy, but I will put my best foot forward and make every effort to assist in their success. I would also like to expand on the events and programs that are already in place such as Rise and Shine, Leadership Gainesville, and many others that already have a foundation here as well as bring in some new ideas that will promote the businesses in this area. I would also like to get the word out that this is the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce, not just Gainesville. So I want to encourage the businesses outside of the Gainesville city limits to get involved and participate in the opportunities that we have in place to assist in promoting their businesses. I am also working on a signature, annual event that will bring people to Gainesville and promote tourism here in our area.

What do you see as the most important priority for the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce in the next few months?

In the next few months, we have some events that the Chamber is sponsoring and I want to focus on the success of these events. We have the Summer Sounds Concert series downtown, we look forward to being a sponsor and partnering with the Gainesville Rodeo in July, and a variety of groups are coming to town during the summer for conferences and other reasons. And again, I’m keeping my focus on the members and their immediate needs. I also want to mention the trolley. The trolley brings so much charm and character to Gainesville and I want to encourage the use of the trolley. It can be used not only for groups from out of town, weddings and local group transportation, but also the citizens here in town can use the trolley as a means of transportation to and from their own points of interest that are on the current scheduled route at no charge on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. You can reserve the trolley by calling the Chamber.

How has your experience brought you to the position of Director of the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce?

My background is in advertising, marketing and public relations specifically for cities, economic development and chambers. I worked for Shapiro & Company, an advertising agency in Plano for over 12 years, owned by State Senator Florence Shapiro. I had the pleasure of working with many cities such as Irving, DeSoto, Garland, The Colony, Plano and Bryan/College Station to name a few. I’ve created and implemented marketing budgets and brand images to promote these cities and the economic growth of the city. We also produced events and festivals such as the 2004 Texas Republican Convention in San Antonio, Garland’s Star Spangled 4th and many others. I feel like the experience I’ve gained through working with a variety of cities, all with different needs, will do nothing but benefit what I can bring to Gainesville. I hope to promote a strong and positive environment for the businesses and industries here and I am looking forward to the challenges ahead.

If you would like additional information regarding the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce, please call (940) 665-2831 or email us at The website is

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