• Chamber Staff

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  • Natalie English

    President & CEO
     

    Natalie English currently serves as president & CEO of the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce. She has served for over 20 years in a chamber of a commerce leadership role and over 30 years advocating on behalf of business. Natalie believes it’s her calling to work with business, government, and elected leaders to make her community attractive for business growth and investment.

     

    Natalie has almost 30 years of experience monitoring legislative and regulatory issues locally, statewide, and at the federal level. She has a strong track record of success and has been responsible for building community support for many investments in infrastructure that have been key to economic development in the communities in which she has worked. She has leadership experience and a background in affecting policies that impact the cost and ease of doing business, quality of life, and workforce.

     

    Natalie’s role as the Charlotte Chamber’s Chief Public Policy Officer included managing campaigns for community referenda, which helped lead to the passage of over $5 billion in infrastructure investments since 2006. In 2007, she served as the chief staff person managing the Vote Against Repeal campaign and the campaign to push for the passage of four county bond referenda to improve infrastructure in the Charlotte community. The Vote Against Repeal campaign successfully convinced 70% of Mecklenburg County voters to defeat the effort to repeal the dedicated funding source for Charlotte’s mass transit program, and all four bond issues passed. 

     

    Natalie has had the opportunity to advocate on behalf of her current community, Wilmington, following Hurricane Florence’s visit to our community and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Natalie led chamber staff to develop communications with members connecting them to resources needed and advocated with elected bodies to define what should be essential businesses. She worked with the Small Business Administration to create a comfortable local presence, so businesses could access the help they needed. Following Hurricane Florence, she worked with United Way leaders to convene a group of community partners that led to the creation of a long-term recovery group that continues to match needs with available resources. Natalie has been a voice on media outlets across the country, letting people know that Wilmington is open for business.

     

    Natalie led a team of chamber staff and volunteers to mount an educational campaign regarding the process of exploring potential partnerships for NHRMC. The effort began in the summer of 2019 and culminated in a final 4-1 vote of the New Hanover County Commission to partner with Novant Health and create a $1.2 billion community foundation. The result will transform New Hanover County and southeastern North Carolina for generations.

     

    Natalie received her B.A. in Communications from North Carolina State University and achieved her designation as a Certified Chamber Executive in 2012, one of only several hundred.  In 2010, the National Association of Women Business Owners – Charlotte Chapter awarded Natalie with their Community Service Award. In 2008, Natalie was awarded the prestigious Marshall Memorial Fellowship and completed a 25-day trip to Europe to learn about and advance trans-Atlantic relations. She was named as a 2008 Women in Business Achievement Award Winner by the Charlotte Business Journal. In 2009 and 2013, the Mecklenburg Times named Natalie one of the 50 Most Influential Women in Charlotte. In 2017, Natalie was nominated as a Woman to Watch by Wilma Magazine. In 2019 and 2020, Natalie made the WilmingtonBiz 100 list as an influencer in the community.

     

    Natalie has also been an active volunteer, having served on the board of MeckEd, Partners in Out of School Time (POST), Leadership Charlotte, the Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, Alexander Youth Network, United Way of Central Carolinas, Charlotte Mecklenburg Workforce Development Board, the North Carolina Center for Public Policy Research, and Junior Achievement. She has also been an active leader in her church, having served three years as chair of the Staff Parish Relations Committee at Assurance United Methodist Church, overseeing the staff management and hiring practices, which led to a marked increase in attendance and stewardship. She served as President of the Charlotte Rotary Club and led the members in celebrations related to the club’s Centennial in 2016. In her new community, she continues that involvement as a member of the the board of United Way of the Cape Fear, the Ports, Waterways & Beaches Commission, and the Tourism Development Authority. Natalie is a co-chair of the Mayor’s Ad Hoc Clean Energy Policy Task Force. She serves on various committees and working groups at St. Andrews Covenant Presbyterian.  

     

    In her spare time, Natalie enjoys spending time with her son Rick on the sidelines of his many sports activities, traveling, playing golf, reading, and writing.

     
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  • Megan Mullins
    VP, Marketing & Communications
     

    Megan Mullins currently serves as VP of Marketing & Communications for the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce. She is a seasoned communications professional with over 15 years of experience developing and executing successful communication strategies as a consultant and in-house communications leader.

    Before joining the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, Megan spent several years working as a consultant for clients in the franchising, hospitality, education, and recreation sectors. She spent ten years working as the Marketing Director for Port City Java, where she led marketing communications and franchise sales efforts as a key contributor to the company's multi-unit growth on college and university campuses.

    In her current role at the chamber, she is accountable for its communications strategy and execution. She works to protect and enhance the organization's reputation and visibility through proactive and responsive media strategies. She collaborates with the organization's senior leadership and Board of Directors to develop and execute marketing and communications strategies, programs, and campaigns for the Chamber and its core programs, events, and initiatives.

    Megan brings an extensive background and experience in social media and emerging digital communication tools and techniques. She specializes in helping the chamber integrate digital communications best practices into the organization's day-to-day operations. Her eye for design, her business acumen, and training in communications helps Megan develop communications programs that deliver value to the chamber and its members.

    Megan received her bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. In 2020, she was recognized on the Greater Wilmington Business Journal's WilmingtonBiz 100 as a Connector in our community.

    Megan is an active community volunteer currently serving on the New Hanover County/City of Wilmington Community Relations Advisory Committee and the City of Wilmington's Sister Cities Commission. Megan is a member of the Steering Committee for the Cape Fear Communicators, and she is an active member of the Public Relations Society of America Charlotte Chapter. 

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  • Jill Chidester
    Manager of Member Experiences & Director of Leadership Wilmington
     
     
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  • Kelly Sanderson

    Finance and Office Manager

    A native New Yorker, Kelly moved to North Carolina in 2001 and eventually to Wilmington in 2006. Kelly has over 15 years of banking and business administration experience. After moving to Wilmington, Kelly was the Office Manager for a local roofing company for 10 years while going back to school to obtain her bachelor’s degree from the University of Mount Olive in Business Administration. Kelly’s hobbies are traveling, going to the pool, and anything to do with music. Kelly lives in Wilmington with her husband Allen and son Matt.

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  • Haven Barnes

    Executive Operations Manager

    Before joining the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce in January of 2020, Haven spent five years as a bookkeeper under a local accounting firm, managing financial reporting and tax processes for various industries throughout the Wilmington area. Since arriving at the Chamber, she has devoted her attention to developing superior systems and methods. Her goal is to improve organizational processes to produce consistent results and accurate, high-quality outcomes to ensure the Chamber continues to perform at the level the community deserves. 

    Outside of the office, she enjoys baking and attempting new craft projects. As a Wilmington native, Haven has a deep appreciation for advocacy and a passion for helping her hometown thrive.