SPRINGVILLE — As reported in last week’s edition of the Journal, the Springville Area Chamber of Commerce has named Marsha Reding, of Collins Center, its newest executive director.
Reding has been selected by the chamber to replace outgoing Executive Director Erika Thurkins and Assistant Executive Director Deb Gernatt, both of whom resigned in November. The new hire combines both positions under a single title, now held by Reding.
Reding started work on Nov. 25.
As executive director of the SACC, Reding said she hopes to “engage the seniors and youth of this community, in various aspects of chamber and events involvement,” and to “bridge the gap between downtown and independently owned and operated shops and ‘big box’ stores on Cascade Drive” in Springville.
“We’re all in this together,” said Reding, who explained that larger stores are beneficial to the area. “Be thankful the large stores came to Springville,” she said.
“They employ many who would otherwise be unemployed. Those employees then have the funds to shop locally, keeping the money cycling here. The variety allows the shoppers to have the best of both – large and small store products.
Reding explained that, if some larger stores had not found space in Springville, “the masses would have headed out of town to find them. That scenario would have been devastating to the community and independently-owned shops.”
She added that “Both [types of business] have something to bring to the table – we have to work together and peacefully co-exist.”
Reding said she also plans to network with businesses located outside the village of Springville.
“I will connect with the existing chamber members, while visiting and sharing with those who are not [members about] the many pluses of being part of the Springville chamber family.”
The new director brings with her several years of experience running local businesses in Gowanda with her husband, the late Tom Reding.
In 1986, the Redings established Reding Auto Centre Inc., an auto parts store, which they ran until 2009. According to her resume, Reding managed accounts payable and receivable for the business, budgeting, marketing and inventory, among other aspects of the enterprise.
The couple also ran a RadioShack in Gowanda, from 1998-2009, which garnered a number of awards, including a Platinum Level Sales Award in 1999.
In addition to her business experience, Reding has also volunteered for the Springville-Griffith Institute Budget Committee and the S-GI Superintendent’s Advistory Committee, where, according to Reding, she “fought for an additional [Board of Cooperative Educational Services] option for students” who were not satisfied with curricula offered by East Aurora BOCES.
Reding also said she “advocated for a revision of the weighting of [grade point averages].”
Reding’s two sons, Jonathan and Michael, now graduates of the Rochester Institute of Technology, both attended S-GI.
Her husband passed away in August of this year.
Reding, who was “born and raised in Springville,” said she got her start “delivering Pennysavers and mowing lawns” around town.
“We were all raised to have a strong work ethic,” she said, of herself and her nine siblings. “Work and family came first.”
Reding would go on to earn office experience at Tops Supermarket in Springville, T.L. Smith Machine Company and Collins Correctional Facility, where she operated the prison’s switchboard and later, inmate records.
In her current position, she said “I will act in this position as if it were my own, giving it everything I have to offer, to help all businesses succeed and the community thrive.”
The SACC is located at 23 North Buffalo St. and can be reached by calling 592-4746 or visiting www.springvillechamber.com