Labor of love
Outgoing chamber director reflects on 10-year tenure
Franklin County Times
Lisa Stockton considers her 10 years as director of the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce a blessing.
"I think we've brought a renewed interest in the chamber and community events, and instead of going backwards, it's grown forwards every year," Stockton said. "The chamber had grown somewhat dormant, and I was blessed to work with a board that wanted to see the chamber grow. When we moved into this downtown office in July 2000, it seemed like the chamber just blossomed."
Under Stockton's leadership, the chamber added or improved several events.
"I'm most proud of seeing how the Watermelon Festival has grown – now the whole community looks forward to it," Stockton said. "We also added a junior leadership class that is near and dear to my heart because students and their parents come back and talk about how much they learned from the program."
Stockton began working for the chamber in 1995 as an assistant to previous director Marie Franklin, and she was promoted to director in January 1998. She said she was fortunate to learn the job gradually.
"Marie was a wonderful teacher and mentor, and she taught me so much. It was like we had always known each other," Stockton said. "I still do some of things I learned from her every day, and it's an advantage the new director won't have."
Also leaving the chamber is Addie Pickett, Stockton's assistant the past three years at the chamber.
"My husband Tim calls me the queen bee, and he calls Addie the queen bee-in-training," said Stockton, who has three sons, a daugther-in-law and two grandchildren. "It's ironic we ended up working together because I used to baby-sit her when she was little. But I told her mother that I wouldn't change anything about her, and she's been like a daugther to our family," Stockton said.
Stockton notified the 18-member chamber board at the December board meeting, and her last day was Jan. 4. She has accepted a state position as facilities administrator with Alabama Industrial Development Training in Muscle Shoals, and she will begin work Monday.