Bob Garrett serves as the President/CEO of the Greater Susquehanna Valley Chamber of Commerce. He works closely with the Chamber's Board of Directors, committees and affiliates in order to implement and coordinate the Chamber's new strategic plan, the Chamber's mission and the daily activities of the Chamber.
Twenty-two years ago, Bob made the difficult decision to make a career change and go to work for then - Congressman Tom Ridge and ended up serving four different governors at PennDOT in Harrisburg. Before this move, he was very active with the Greater Susquehanna Valley Chamber of Commerce as its Transporatation Committee Chairman, headed up the Route 15 Coalition and was serving as the Director of the Union County Economic Development Council. Now, after his two-decade Harrisburg stint, Bob is back and ready to work hard on building partnerships, creating an economic development buzz, increasing the Chamber's membership and helping to take the Central Susquehanna Valley Thruway from the drawing boards to a ground breaking and, finally, to a ribbon cutting.
Bob grew up in southeastern Pennsylvania, graduated from the Thaddeus Stevens State School of Technology and received his teacher's certification at Penn State. In 1980, he began his professional career at the SUN Area Vocational Technical School. While director of the Union County Economic Development Council, during the 1990's, Bob had a major role in siting the Allenwood Federal Correctional Complex as well as the expansions for several well-known companies.
Director of Membership & Communications
As the Director of Membership, Jenny Wentz guides potential clients to Chamber businesses. Through telephone referrals and website referrals, Jenny also works to improve the bottom line of members by increasing their business. Working with the relationship manager, Jenny assists in coordinating events to ensure and increase the Chamber’s membership support and value proposition. She is responsible for maintaining the membership database and is instrumental in all membership recruitment efforts. Jenny is staff support for the ambassador, membership, young Americans and business and education committees.
Jenny is also responsible for the Chamber's Social Networking, website development and producing multiple digital newsletters as the Director of Communications.
Jenny graduated as the Valedictorian from McCann School of Business and Technology in 2011, earning an associate degree in administrative office technology. While serving as a student, Jenny also dedicated herself to a work-study position in the career services department at McCann. Through the work study position, she was able to learn and grow in her field, bringing that experience to the Chamber as an intern and eventually a full-time employee.
Director of Finance
As the Director of Finance, Abbie is responsible for handling and overseeing all of the Chamber’s financial dealings. She also works closely with the Boards of SIDCO, Leadership Susquehanna Valley and Focus Central PA to ensure that their day to day financial and administrative tasks are completed. Abbie provides assistance to the President/CEO in his daily tasks and supports, as needed, her fellow coworkers in their positions. Her contribution and hard work helps the Chamber to serve its members effectively and efficiently.
The Valley has always been home to Abbie. She is a graduate of Selinsgrove Area High School and received a bachelor’s degree in elementary and early childhood education with a minor in computer information systems from Bloomsburg University. Before joining the Chamber team, Abbie was a substitute teacher in the Valley. She was also employed in marketing for a number of years, most recently working with Weis Market accounts at the company’s corporate office in Sunbury. Her past experiences have given Abbie the knowledge and skills she needs to effectively serve in her position as the Director of Finance.
*Staff photos provided by Schindler's Studio
As Relationship Manager, Chris works to ensure the “value proposition” of Chamber membership. Specifically, he engages new members, solicits corporate sponsorships, and ensures that each Chamber member is aware of benefits. In a sense, he’s the Chamber’s guarantor of a personal connection between members and staff. Equally field-deployed and office-based, Chris regularly meets with members, assists with coordinating, planning, and implementing Chamber events, and serves in various committee duties of the Chamber. He also serves as the Executive Director of Leadership Susquehanna Valley, a GSVCC affiliated 501(c)3 non-profit.
Born and raised in Rhode Island, Chris fell in love with Pennsylvania while in college. An Eagle Scout and 2007 graduate of Gettysburg College, he relocated to the Susquehanna Valley in 2012 when he married his lovely wife Kali. Prior to joining the Chamber’s staff, Chris served as the Senior District Executive for the Susquehanna Council, Boy Scouts of America (2012 – 2016). In this capacity, he served Union, Snyder, and Northumberland Counties for Scouting, learning the footprint of the Chamber while making wonderful local connections. A 2015 graduate of Leadership Susquehanna Valley, Chris’ combined experience in for-profit and non-profit work makes him an asset to the Chamber team.