CHAMPS Welcomes Betsy Poos as Executive Director
CHAMPS ushers in a new era today with the start of Betsy Poos as Executive Director. Ms. Poos is a longtime Capitol Hill resident and previously served on the CHAMPS Board of Directors. She enters the position with experience in public policy and small business ownership. She recently introduced herself to CHAMPS members at the September quarterly meeting with the following words…
I am thrilled to be the incoming Executive Director for CHAMPS, our Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce. I will take this opportunity to tell you something of my background and my vision as I step into this new role.
A native Texan, I moved to Capitol Hill in 1999 and began my career working for Congresswoman (and now Senator) Debbie Stabenow (D-MI). I was particularly honored to work for a powerful self-made woman who surrounded herself with other brilliant women. And for a decade I continued my work in government and politics including work as a policy researcher.
I joined the lobbying firm The Smith-Free Group in 2005 where I gained invaluable advocacy knowledge working behind the firm’s President. I also indulged in another passion and began teaching yoga classes in the evening.
About the time my friends were leaving secure jobs in early 2008 to join the various presidential campaigns, I took a leap to work for myself as a full time yoga teacher.
And in 2009 I became co-owner of Capitol Hill Yoga. Owning a small business is amazingly rewarding, but it is also tough work. After seven years as a small business owner, there is hardly a job field I haven’t fulfilled. I was co-owner, operations manager, marketing director, accountant, human resources manager, retail developer, yoga teacher, etc. etc.
I’ve been an active member of CHAMPS since owning Capitol Hill Yoga and have served on the Board of Directors for the past two years. In part my work on the CHAMPS board gave me confidence that I could contribute to the Capitol Hill neighborhood outside of the yoga studio.
I made the choice to sell my share of Capitol Hill Yoga at the end of 2015. Unwinding a business partnership (however amicable) was as hard as anything I’ve done, and I was happy to have support from CHAMPS members through that process.
Now as I step into the role as Executive Director I am excited to bring together my passion for this neighborhood, my experience as a small business owner, and my policy knowledge to work for CHAMPS.
Our tagline is Advocate. Connect. Promote click here to investigate. These are our three pillars. One of my first steps will be to thoroughly educate myself and then our CHAMPS members on legislation before the D.C. Council that will affect you and your business. In this regard and greater, I plan to personally touch base with every champs member and find out exactly what you want. I am now working for each of you.
And you can bet I will focus on growing our membership base. I want to see our networking events grow. I want members to gather to cheers business successes and troubleshoot business woes. May we all be able to “shop local” within CHAMPS for business and personal solutions that make our daily lives better. I’ve often acquainted running a small business to having a child. It takes a village to raise a child – CHAMPS members are your village.
And last but not at all least CHAMPS will continue to promote member businesses. I will increase CHAMPS online/social media presence where I plan to regularly profile and promote our member businesses.
Advocate. Connect. Promote. Again I’m thrilled to step into this role and thank you all for being a part of this revitalizing stage with CHAMPS.