C/H Chamber installs Board; Director retires

By David Taylor

After eight years of leading the Crosby-Huffman Chamber of Commerce and the community through a hurricane, the COVID-19 pandemic, a record freeze, and summer drought, Chamber president and CEO Kim Harris has announced she has taken another opportunity and has left the chamber.

“I loved my years at the chamber,” Harris said, “and I will miss everyone.”

Harris has worked in the financial industry in Crosby or Huffman which afforded her the opportunity to be a member of the chamber through the banks, credit union, and KMCO for two years.

“I got involved with the chamber and served on the board for three terms or six years,” she said.

Harris began her service on the chamber staff as an admin working under then President Glenda Logsdon. When Logsdon left, Harris became the new president in January of 2014.

“It was a natural fit for me after I was laid off from KMCO since I already knew most everybody at the chamber,” Harris said.

Once on the job, she had found her niche.

“I loved working at the chamber. It was a very rewarding position. I’m a people person and so it was like something new every day,” she said.

Not everything was hunky-dory, however.

Harris assisted businesses through Hurricane Harvey recovery and then helped secure funds for many of them who later struggled to survive in the pandemic.

“It’s really been tough for the chamber since the pandemic,” she said. “A lot of our restaurants didn’t make it and the ones who did haven’t been able to afford to continue their membership.”

Chamber Chairman Larry Koslovsky was appreciative of the years Harris gave to the chamber.

“We wouldn’t have survived as a chamber without her leadership and keeping us together through the pandemic. It was a challenging time,” Koslovsky said.

He also credited Harris for the growth in the chamber membership, particularly before the pandemic.

“She’s been instrumental in keeping things going,” he said.

With a void, Koslovsky said the chamber is going through a time of transition.

“I think the board is trying to get a handle on what it is to be the Chamber of Commerce in our communities and figure out how we can get the most out of the resources we have,” he said.

That includes finding ways to support membership better.

“We want to make some improvements in our operations and then around the first of the year, we will be prepared to hire someone to take her place,” he said.

One of the biggest challenges is being able to have enough staff to remain a vibrant chamber.

“Our morale is good, and we have excellent members, but to attract more members, we need to make some moves to show the benefits of being in the chamber,” Koslovsky said.

Their goal, he said, is to have a chamber that meets the needs of its membership and the quality of life in Crosby and Huffman.

To that end, the chamber hosted their October luncheon where they elected six new board members: Crystal Erogoshkin, Tim Patterson, Tracy Gaylean, Chelsey Long, Bella Dion, and Larry Koslovsky.

Kim Harris is the new Community Center Director for the I. T. May Community Center in Huffman and promised to stay connected in both the Huffman and Crosby communities.