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ACRA has a new president

Sarah S. Chung

Local resident Christine Nolen has been chosen as the new presidentof the Aspen Chamber Resort Association from a field of more thana dozen candidates.Citing Nolen’s experience in strategic development, marketing,and her “proven ability to be an effective leader,” ACRA boardchairman Mike Otte said he is looking forward to a new era forthe organization.”It really came down to her experience and the way she shinedin the selection process,” Otte said. “When we first startinglooking, I made a list of all the attributes the perfect presidentwould have. Of course it was impossible to fill every single one,but Chris came as close as anyone could possibly get.”In her seven years here, Nolen has been the executive directorof the Aspen/Snowmass Council for the Arts and most recently servedas the director of development and marketing with the Aspen MusicFestival and School.Nolen describes her position at the music festival as “a verydifficult place to leave,” but she said she is eager to take onthe challenges of the ACRA presidency.When Nolen assumes her new role on March 29, she has two initialgoals to pursue.The first is to tackle the issue of local businesses attractingand retaining a steady work force. The second is to “promote theAspen community to a variety of constituents” among the visitingpublic, she said.”Diane Moore has taken huge strides in these areas and I’d liketo continue to ascertain and address the needs and challengesof the local businesses,” Nolen said. Moore announced plans tostep down as ACRA president last month. Another hot issue Nolen said she won’t shy away from is the ongoingstruggle to fairly represent the sometimes conflicting interestsof both the local and nationally owned businesses in town.”A particular challenge is to find a balance between locally ownedbusinesses and very successful nationally owned chains,” Nolensaid. “The chamber is responsible to both and must fairly navigatethat balance.”Before settling in the Roaring Fork Valley, Nolen held variouspositions specializing in marketing and strategic planning inChicago. During her 15-year stint in the Windy City, Nolen alsoran her own consulting firm.Nolen currently resides in Snowmass Village with her son Connorand husband John Quigley.


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