How can the Columbus Chamber help you? Our team of business experts is here to provide information and connect you to resources and services.

 

Don DePerro

President & CEO

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President & CEO

Don DePerro, President and CEO of the Columbus Chamber, previously served as president and publisher of Columbus Business First where he enjoyed a newspaper career that spanned over 30 years. He has been named the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Media Advocate of the Year for the state of Florida and has received six American City Eagle Awards for Excellence – the highest honor awarded to American City associates – as both an editor and publisher. In addition to his professional accomplishments, Don remains heavily involved in countless community initiatives. Don and his wife Lia have three children, including one Buckeye, and live in Dublin, Ohio.

    Desmond “Dez” Bryant

    Vice President of Government Relations

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    Vice President of Government Relations

    Dez has a versed background in a wide range of public policy issues, an insider’s perspective of the legislative process, and contacts throughout Ohio’s Capitol Square. Through his professional experience, he possesses a wealth of knowledge in grassroots campaigns, educating public and elected officials on policy initiatives, and navigating through all levels and branches of government.

    An alumnus of the Ohio General Assembly, he previously served as Director of Government Affairs for Status Solutions—a company that specializes in situational awareness and risk management technology platforms. At Status, he advocated and lobbied in over nine states and provided Status’ business partners with strategic counsel on how to best navigate and enhance governmental relationships with public and elected officials, state agencies, and trade associations.

    With his insight and familiarity with Ohio’s governmental and political systems, Dez will lead the government relations efforts for the Columbus Chamber and provide our members with practical guidance and constructive analysis related to important legislative issues and advocate on their behalf to legislators, committees, and other interested stakeholders.

    An Akron native, Dez is a graduate of Kent State University and the University of Dayton. Outside of the office, he enjoys playing intramural sports, Orangetheory workouts, traveling with his wife Tiffany, and grilling out with friends and family.

      Kelly Campbell, CPA

      Vice President of Finance & Administration

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      Vice President of Finance & Administration

      As you would expect with any CPA, Kelly is whiz on the 10-key and can calculate finances faster than anybody in the Midwest.  Know that you will never catch her cooking the books, but you might catch her cooking up a storm in the kitchen. With all her amazing math skills, she’s also figured out the perfect ratio of ingredients to make an award-winning banana pudding. Just ask anybody in the office who has challenged her during our annual bake-off that we hold each year for our United Way Fundraiser.

      Kelly graduated from Wright State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Finance. She also holds a Master’s degree in Accounting and Financial Management from Keller Graduate School of DeVry in addition to being a CPA.

        Hope Cotter

        Vice President of Marketing & Communications

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        Vice President of Marketing & Communications

        Born in Cincinnati and a transplant to Central Ohio, Hope has a great passion for Ohio businesses and community. As an Otterbein University graduate, Hope brings more than 20 years of strategic and creative marketing experience to her role as Vice President of Marketing & Communications at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce. As an accomplished leader, marketer, and researcher providing data-driven solutions, she has been recognized for dedicated leadership, ideation, and solution implementation. Prior to joining the Chamber, Hope was the Sr. Director of Sales Marketing and Research for Gannett | USA Today | Dispatch Media Group for nearly 10 years.

        Expanding upon her commitment to the Central Ohio community, Hope also serves on the Board of Trustees for the United Way of Central Ohio.

        Hope lives in Grove City with her husband, Jason, and has two daughters and four dogs (yes, FOUR!). In her free time, she enjoys hiking, traveling, attending the theater and volunteering.

          Kelly Fuller

          Vice President of Talent & Workforce Development

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          Vice President of Talent & Workforce Development

          Kelly Fuller loves to help people discover and develop their gifts, and as the Chamber’s Vice President of Talent and Workforce Development, she gets to do just that. Her entire career has existed in the workforce development space, beginning at Discover Card in 1986. Now with the Chamber, Kelly works to serve the workforce and economic development needs of its membership and the greater Columbus community.

          Kelly is a graduate of Miami University and Mount Vernon Nazarene University. Outside of the office, she is an avid runner, published poet and a mother to her two children. No matter where you might run into Kelly, one thing is certain; she is dedicated in supporting your business to find candidates who will make a difference for your bottom line.

            Lorie Holt

            Vice President of Member Services

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            Vice President of Member Services

            As Vice President Member Services, Lorie Holt uses her experiences from prior roles in non-profit leadership, where she specialized in areas like organizational growth strategies, account management and brand development, to guide the Chamber’s membership and retention efforts. Lorie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from The Ohio State University.

            A Columbus native and downtown dweller, Lorie enjoys spending her weekend mornings at Kittie’s Cakes and strolling through Schiller Park with her husband, Jared, and their son, Oliver.

              Jeff Zimmerman

              Vice President of Sales

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              Vice President of Sales

              Adding a plethora of experience to our versatile leadership team, Jeff serves as the Vice President of Sales for the Columbus Chamber. From identifying new membership target candidates to assisting in the business development sales process, you can count on Jeff to offer innovative ideas and bring excitement to every task. Formerly the Director of Columbus Region Logistics Council for the Chamber, Jeff is no stranger to working diligently for our members.

              Previous to joining the Chamber, Jeff held positions as an independent business development consultant and sales/sales leadership roles with Boise Cascade Office Products/OfficeMax and Moore Business Forms. Jeff is a graduate of Buffalo State College where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Business.

                Jess Laughlin

                Events Producer

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                Events Producer

                A Columbus native and graduate of Otterbein University, Jess Laughlin is go-to for all things related to the Columbus scene – making her the ideal events producer for our Chamber team. Jess realized her passion for nonprofit work and event planning right out of college during her tenure with AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps. This fervor for helping others soon led to her time at Bike & Build – a 72-day cross-country cycling trip from Providence, Rhode Island to San Francisco, California – and a six-year stint with the Columbus Dispatch running event operations for large trade shows, banquets and corporate events.

                Jess’s position as Chamber events producer isn’t her only full-time job – she also is a mom to two tiny humans and married to her college sweetheart. In her spare time, Jess enjoys traveling far and wide in search of good music, trying out the vibrant scene of local craft beer and laughing and dancing whenever life tries to get serious. She is also dedicated to helping her mother run a small non-profit in honor of her late father, which supports families who have lost a loved one to heart disease. 

                With her bright demeanor and go-getter attitude, Jess is the perfect addition to the Columbus Chamber team – adding a flair to each and every event she works on.

                  Abby Kolczun

                  Marketing Manager

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                  Marketing Manager

                  Abby Kolczun was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio and moved to Columbus after graduating from Ohio Wesleyan University. Abby has a strong passion for marketing and building relationships. Abby was the Events Intern at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce and then moved on to start working for a non-profit in donor relations, development, and annual fundraising for a few years. She is a graduate of Franklin University, with her Master of Science degree in Marketing and Communication.

                  She loves to travel and hang out with family and friends and enjoys spending her free time with her goldendoodle puppy, Frankie.

                    Tim McKelly

                    Sponsorship & Partnership Sales Executive

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                    Sponsorship & Partnership Sales Executive

                    Tim McKelly knows Columbus and he knows it well. As a resident of the Capital City for his entire adult life and with over 25 years of experience in Central Ohio’s sales and marketing field, Tim is the ideal resource for local businesses in the business development sector.

                    When he’s not helping Chamber members increase their visibility, you can find Tim traveling the globe, from New Zealand to Chile and beyond. In fact, Tim helped to organize and lead three photographic safaris to East Africa. An expert multi-tasker and facilitator of connections, you can count on Tim to use his diverse skillset to help your business thrive.

                      Taylor Exner

                      Senior Engagement Manager

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                      Senior Engagement Manager

                      Taylor has had a passion for building relationships for as long as she can remember. As a Senior Engagement Manager for the Chamber, Taylor uses that passion to connect her members with resources to benefit their businesses. Her goal is to treat every member in a way that is unique and aligns with their goals.

                      A New York native, Taylor ventured into Columbus to earn her psychology degree from The Ohio State University. You can find her exploring the Short North neighborhood or heading to one of her favorite hiking spots in her spare time. Her love for Columbus and its culture continues to grow each day as she meets more of the businesses that make up its charming community.

                       

                        Mallory Roth

                        Member Relationship Manager

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                        Member Relationship Manager

                        Mallory Roth hails from Vermilion, Ohio, “A small town on a Great Lake,” and holds a B.A. from Wittenberg University in political science. After a short stint as a nanny in Charleston, SC, Mallory made her way to Columbus.  Previously, she worked closely with development, annual fundraising and member engagement. Mallory has experience coordinating and executing annual giving campaigns and membership drives using social media, direct mail and stewardship.  She also has experience with volunteer management and the development of goals-driven strategies to increase awareness of the organization among constituents and the community.

                        Mallory has first-hand experience with small business, as she grew up living in a Bed & Breakfast owned by her parents. When Mallory is not in the office, she enjoys cooking, traveling and relaxing on Lake Erie. She is an avid visitor of Local Cantina on Tuesdays and never passes up a chance to enjoy breakfast at DK Diner.

                          Zakee Bashir

                          Manager, Columbus Region Logistics Council

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                          Manager, Columbus Region Logistics Council

                          Zakee Bashir was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio and is a big fan of every sports team here in the city. A graduate of Indiana State University and former college football player he loves to travel, read, and go to the gym. He spent the last several years living in Houston, Texas and then Costa Rica where he taught English and used his second language to manage relationships between a language institute and local businesses.

                          Zakee’s logistic background includes nearly four years of experience working in shared mail distribution where he managed supply chain operations for clients located all over the United States. During the fall you can find him coaching high school football, and throughout the year looking for volunteer opportunities and new local restaurants to try. With ambition, creativity, and a go-getter attitude, he is to here to work with the Columbus Region Logistics Council and find solutions for the needs of businesses in Columbus.

                            Madeline Chilton

                            Member Resource Specialist

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                            Member Resource Specialist

                            Madeline’s roots run deep in Columbus, Ohio. Her favorite parts of the CBUS lifestyle are the local art, culture, historical neighborhoods and metro parks. With her experience as an educator and human resource professional, she developed a passion for bringing awareness to how we think, act and live. Madeline is on a mission to empower local business owners through collaboration, outreach and spreading the message. She’s motivated by a deep belief that empowering small businesses can create positive change.

                              Holly Caruso

                              Business Development Representative

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                              Business Development Representative

                              A native Ohioan with a degree from The Ohio State University (Go Bucks!), Holly’s personality is radiant to say the least. When it comes to business, however, she’s zeroed in on the prize at hand – helping your business attain its goals.

                              The professional formerly known as Columbus Business First Account Executive, Holly brings her expertise to the table every day at the Columbus Chamber as a Business Development Representative. Knowledgeable in many trades, Holly is in tune with what businesses need and wants to help you achieve your goals. When she’s off-duty, expect to see her in full-blown Mom-mode, having fun with any of her four children or maybe even Bella, the family hedgehog.

                              A hard worker at heart with an eye for building new relationships, you better call Holly – she’s here to help you.

                                Holly Gallucci

                                Business Development Representative

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                                Business Development Representative

                                Holly Gallucci brings more than 15 years of experience with her to the Columbus Chamber as a business-to-business Advertising Account Executive with Columbus Monthly magazine and The Columbus Dispatch. Her familiarity and understanding of central Ohio businesses are most helpful in her role as a Business Development Representative, finding solutions for your company’s needs.

                                As a graduate of Worthington Kilbourne High School and The Ohio State University, Holly is a true Buckeye with her eye on making our Columbus area partners become even more successful!

                                When pursuing other interests, Holly is busy being a wife and mom of one daughter, plus two energetic kittens! She also enjoys volunteering at her child’s school, jogging & exercising, socializing with friends, and vacationing in Florida.

                                  Maria Kritikos Oakes

                                  Business Development Representative

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                                  Business Development Representative

                                  Maria Kritikos Oakes has completed what some might refer to as the 614 trifecta; she was born and raised in Columbus AND attended The Ohio State University – Go Bucks! She spent a number of years living in Las Vegas where she was married and had both of her sons before ultimately moving back to Columbus to be close to family.

                                  Central Ohio isn’t the only community close to Maria’s heart. Greek is Maria’s first language and she has spent many summers enjoying Greece with her family. When not facilitating connections in the business community, Maria is focused on her duties as a parent to her two boys and is a leader/advocate in the special needs community as a special needs parent. You can count on Maria to identify solutions to your business’ hurdles as a Business Development Representative of the Columbus Chamber.

                                    Jordan Miller

                                    Business Development Representative

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                                    Business Development Representative

                                    An entrepreneur at heart and Columbus native, Jordan Miller is the ideal connector to help your business identify its opportunities for success as a Chamber business development representative. His past experiences working in the financial service industry with elite companies like Nationwide, Fifth Third Bank and Heartland Payment Systems has helped him to establish a deep understanding and respect for business operations.

                                    Aside from Jordan’s position at the Chamber, he loves to get lost in a good movie or try new recipes – cooking is a competing passion with business development. Jordan’s other full-time job is staying active with his family as a father of four children. Whether it be with a delectable dish or helping a local business thrive, you can count on Jordan. Your business is his business.

                                      Kelly Douglas

                                      Accounting Clerk

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                                      Accounting Clerk

                                      Kelly Douglas is no stranger to the accounting industry. She brings 22 years of experience to the Chamber and works diligently as its Accounting Clerk to ensure finances are always in order.

                                      When she’s not at the Chamber, Kelly enjoys spending time with her son. Their favorite activities include watching movies and playing games – the card game ‘War’ is their favorite! She enjoys reading, cooking and is a self-proclaimed sucker for reality TV. Kelly is new to Columbus having moved from Mansfield Ohio and she is already in love with her new home!

                                        Laura Kenyon

                                        Manager, Office Services

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                                        Manager, Office Services

                                        We could tell you that Laura Kenyon has been with the Columbus Chamber for 17 years and does everything from accounting to operations to database management. But what you really need to know is that she’s got a fantastic sense of humor, wins our office chili cook-off every year, is always upbeat, and usually has some pretty amazing candy in her candy dish.  Laura is to the Chamber as Norm is to Cheers. Everybody knows her name and she is a much-appreciated fixture here.

                                        Before coming to the Chamber, Laura worked for 13 years at the law firm of Schwartz, Ramirez, Kelm and Warren as Office Services Manager.

                                          Tracy Bloom

                                          Business Support Administrator

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                                          Business Support Administrator

                                          Tracy serves as the front line connection to our members; we like to think of her as our Director of First and Last Impressions.  Her warm smile and sweet demeanor make her the perfect person for the job.  She truly cares about each and every member just like she would her own family–and as a mother of four grown boys and grandmother to 12, you know you’re in the right hands. When she’s not spending time with her family, Tracy explores the healing benefits of essential oils.

                                          Before the Columbus Chamber, Tracy was the Day Treatment School Secretary at Rosemont where she served in many positions during her ten year stay assisting children and families in need.