The ending of one era brings on the beginning of a new one. With the retirement of longtime President, Roddie Anne Blackwell, The Eatonton-Putnam Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce the welcoming of new President, Maggie Milner.
Maggie comes to the Chamber from The Plaza Arts Center, where she served as the first Development Director for the organization, overseeing grants, sponsorships, the membership campaign, and worked to expand their programming. Her career in Nonprofit Management spans over the past decade, beginning when she entered the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance at Georgia College, where she became a Certified Nonprofit Professional. She has since spent time working with Habitat for Humanity of Milledgeville-Baldwin County and the Ocmulgee Court Appointed Special Advocates, where she is still an active volunteer advocate for children in foster care.
Having been in the Eatonton-Putnam area for nearly 7 years, Maggie has been involved in various community events and organizations that led her to get to know the area better, including Chamber related events. While working in Milledgeville, Maggie joined the Young Professionals Board and even attended a couple of Putnam-Greene Young Professional events, in effort to show support for neighboring communities. She was also on the Board of The Eatonton-Milledgeville Film Festival as it was expanding into Eatonton, gaining insight into local venues and businesses in Eatonton-Putnam. Through both tenures, along with residing in Putnam county, Maggie was able to gain many contacts throughout Eatonton-Putnam.
Most recently, she is a 2020 graduate of the Chamber’s Leadership Putnam class where she was awarded as Most Outstanding Leader of the group, a vote that came from her classmates. It was during her time in Leadership that her desire to serve the Eatonton-Putnam community grew. “Being part of a group of driven and diverse individuals, sharing a common goal, to see Eatonton-Putnam grow and prosper, showed me the potential this small town has and the ability of its citizens to make it happen.”
As she begins her new role, Maggie is looking forward to getting to know the names and faces of the Chamber’s membership base. When asked about what goals she has to continue serving the current members and attract new prospects, she stated, “I’m looking forward to getting feedback from the current members to see what needs are being met and where there are areas we could grow. We all know this year has brought a very new range of needs to everyone and I believe the Chamber has done a wonderful job staying relevant and in touch to provide resources. What someone may have been interested in to help their business grow before 2020 may be different than what they are interested in after. I expect a continued focus on sustainability and a lot of creativity.”
Maggie is also excited to play a part in the future of tourism in Eatonton-Putnam. As small-town revitalization continues to spread throughout the nation, she aims to see Eatonton-Putnam stay on the trajectory it has been on to be a part of that economic development. She plans to continue to strengthen the relationships among the several Arts organizations, museums, and the growing film industry in efforts to bring a diverse population in. “When you have tourist attractions to draw a diverse group in for a day or weekend, you have attractions to build a diverse residence. I see people being able to bring their friends, families and neighbors together for a trip that satisfies all walks of life”.
Maggie is very excited for her new role as a leader in the Eatonton-Putnam community. She knows she has big shoes to fill, but she is determined to continue the hard work ethic and build on the legacy Roddie Anne has established for the Chamber.
Originally from Coweta County, Maggie moved to Milledgeville in 2007 to attend Georgia College, where she received a B.A. in Liberal Studies along with her certification in Nonprofit Management. She moved to Putnam County in 2014 and is now a resident of the Eatonton Historic District. In her spare time, you can find her walking with her dogs, Rooney and Joie, around town or enjoying any activity that gets her outside.
Please join the Chamber’s Board of Directors in welcoming Maggie to her new role.