WASHBURN COUNTY -- In May 2022, long-time Executive Director, Joel Zimmerman, accepted a new opportunity elsewhere and “after 6 years of dedicated and strong service to the WCEDC and the Washburn County area, we were disappointed to see him leave, but excited for the new opportunities ahead,” Said WCEDC President, Sara Miles. “The new programs and out of the box thinking on economic growth in our area has set Washburn County on a great trajectory toward continued growth and prosperity.” She continued.
Immediately after his notice to the board of directors of the WCEDC, the board with Zimmerman’s help, began a search for a new executive director. “I was humbled to be asked to help find my own replacement.” Said Zimmerman. “The decision to leave was difficult because I love this area, I love the businesses and people I’ve worked with, and I didn’t want to drop the mic and walk away. I want to continue to have an impact.” Zimmerman continued.
After several weeks of searching and interviews, the board of directors of the WCEDC are proud to announce the hiring of their new Executive Director effective Monday, June 27th, 2022. Joy Melton, the WCEDC’s impeccable Administrative Coordinator was chosen and has been promoted to the new role. According to Miles, “Joy was a natural selection for this role and we are excited to see what the future holds for not only our organization under her leadership, but for the entire Washburn County.”
Joy has been with the WCEDC for nearly 10 months and knows the organization, the mission, and the people we work with already. She is able to hit the ground running without much of the introduction period the position can sometimes take. “The past ten months at WCEDC I have learned so much about our community, business and tourism needs and I am excited for the opportunity to further contribute to the growth of Washburn County!” said Melton. “There is so much to offer in Washburn County! As a nearly lifelong resident of the area, this is my home. I look forward to developing and building relationships and working with all of Washburn County to implement strategies within our communities.
As Joy begins her new role with the WCEDC, she welcomes those with ideas, comments, and concerns to reach out to her. She also is taking over at the beginning of the 2022 WCEDC Membership drive. The WCEDC is a 501c3 non-profit with the mission to expand the tax-base in Washburn County, WI so that residents and visitors have the best possible amenities and living conditions in this already attractive place to live and play!