After six years as chief operating officer for the Greater Cleveland Chamber of Commerce, Jim Carson is retiring. He cites a desire to spend more time with his wife, Christina, and to promote his own ceramics business as reasons for giving up the Chamber post. His last day will be Dec. 16.
“During his six-year contract, Jim played an essential role in reestablishing the Chamber, both financially and operationally,” according to a statement from the Chamber board.
Carson first joined the Chamber in 2012 as owner of Coffee News, a business he later sold. He served on the board of directors from 2014-2015, and took over running the Chamber as COO in 2015.
“He has worked well with each year’s board of directors, and his diverse background has benefited the Chamber is many positive ways. Because of his leadership and focus, the financial status of the Chamber is in a significantly better position than when he was hired in 2015, and he has helped initiate several positive changes within the organization,” the Board statement reads.
Over the last six years and with Carson’s leadership, Chamber membership has increased membership by 45 percent. Carson believes Board members deserve much of the credit.
“The big reason for our successes is we have a really supportive board that works well together,” said Carson. “My motto with the board has always been that being on the board isn’t a resume builder. This is a working board. All of the board members serve on committees with many chairing committees.”
The board of directors will be looking to fill the position with an interim until a permanent COO is selected. The Chamber plans to honor Carson at one of the upcoming monthly membership luncheons.