JANUARY 14

The Tucson Metro Chamber will host Governor Doug Ducey at the annual State of the State luncheon to deliver his State of the State address detailing the issues affecting not only Southern Arizona, but the entire state of Arizona. This is a highly attended and visible event that addresses many important issues.

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EXECUTIVE TEAM


Amber

Amber considers herself a Texazonan as she is a Texas girl who became a Wildcat and never left. Raising three boys with her fire captain husband, Amber never slows down. Involved in politics since serving on Student Council in high school, and for Senator McCain after college, her passion has always been about leaving the world a better place than she found it. Wanting to create systemic change and improve the community remains an active goal that she strives to hit daily—personally and professionally.  

Hobbies:
Gardening, hunting, sitting on the sidelines of Little League games

Fun Fact: 
In addition to mother of 3 boys, Amber is the mother of 5 goats, 4 dogs and a lone rooster named Pierre

AMBER SMITH

President & CEO


Michael

A native Tucsonan, Michael’s twenty-two-year professional career has primarily centered on political strategy, business development and advocacy, and organizational management. He actually enjoys politics and policy (early in his career he was Chief-of-Staff to Tucson City Council Member Fred Ronstadt) and leads the Chamber’s local government affairs and initiatives. Between trying to reduce government intrusion into business and advancing talent development and attraction, Michael is committed to making Tucson a great place to live, work and play.

Hobbies:

Ice hockey goaltender, classical guitar, painting (mainly in the form of duplicating Rothkos and Thiebauds), live music, travel

Fun fact:

Michael was named the Official Scorer for the Tucson Padres AAA Baseball Club from 2011 – 2013. The team moved to El Paso in 2014.

MICHAEL GUYMON

Vice President

Local Community & Government Affairs


Robert

Growing up an Army kid, Robert lived across the U.S. and Western Europe. While attending the U of A, he found his calling with policy and politics. After a short stint interning with a U.S. Senator, Robert came to the Chamber in 2007. He has focused primarily on public policy and politics within local, state, federal and international governments. Robert is also heavily involved with numerous Chamber of Commerce industry professional associations and boards.

Hobbies:
Golf, fly fishing, photography, cooking, travel

Fun fact:
Robert was visiting Berlin when the wall came down in November 1989.


ROBERT MEDLER

Vice President

State & Federal Affairs




    INVESTOR RELATIONS


    Carrie

    Carrie is an outdoors girl most comfortable wearing jeans, cowboy boots and riding her horses. She relocated to Tucson from Bend, Oregon, 16 years ago with her husband and two children, to enjoy the beautiful Arizona desert and sunshine. Left behind in Oregon were her eclectic jobs of farming, banking, jeweler, owner of a floral shop and a tile manufacturing company.


    Hobbies:
    Horseback riding, running, traveling


    Fun Fact:
    Carrie broke her finger while trying to kill a spider.

    CARRIE GILCHRIST

    Director of Business Development


    Heather

    Heather hails from Maryland and headed west to Tucson seeking year-round sunshine after starting college in chilly Boston. She’s had unusual jobs, such as being a “ramp rat” who guided in planes and made a living for many years by painting murals. More recently, she sold website design services and was a writer/editor for a tourism-marketing company

    Hobbies:
    Hiking, photography, traveling, travel blogging

    Fun facts:
    Heather can unicycle and once won a trip to Scotland where she learned the craft of making Scotch.

    HEATHER WUELPERN

    Director of Communications


    Carol

    Carol is an Iowa native and started working in the soybean and corn fields at the age of 11. Carol spent 27 years in the printing industry and in 2003 began a new career in event planning. She took a short hiatus from 2008 to 2011 and traveled the country working with insurance and roofing companies dealing with hail and lightning claims. Carol loves her job here at the Chamber and especially likes meeting new people.


    Hobbies:
    Gardening, crafts, traveling, photography, hiking


    Fun fact:
    Carol is the oldest 25-year-old you will ever meet.

    CAROL GATEWOOD

    Director of Special Projects



    Sector Partnerships

    Adam

    Adam was born in Albany, New York, but was quickly whisked away to Tucson shortly after his first birthday. After graduating from THE Ohio State University, Adam came back home and spent nearly a decade working in the beer industry before joining the Chamber staff. Adam is extremely active in our community and just recently graduated from the Greater Tucson Leadership class of 2019. An avid sports fan, Adam enjoys having season basketball tickets and going to games with his mom.


    Hobbies:
    9-ball pool, golf, yoga, video games (He still has his original Nintendo!)


    Fun Fact:
    Adam’s father is full-blooded Navajo and his great-great grandfather was the first Tribal Chairman of the Navajo Nation in 1923 (Henry Chee Dodge)

    ADAM BEGODY

    Senior Account Executive


      Sponsorships

      Jason

      Jason is a seventh-generation Tucson native who grew up on the northeast side and started working at the age of 14 babysitting and tutoring kids in his neighborhood. Jason worked for a major car manufacturer for eight years in the corporate consumer affairs division and then started his foray into project management and event planning. He enjoys having his finger on the pulse of Tucson and championing for a better business community.

      Hobbies:

      Gardening, DIY, collecting old jukeboxes, radios, old signs and random Americana, and hopes to own a classic car one day soon

      Fun Fact: 

      Jason used to be a dedicated spelunker and explored old mines and caves in Arizona.

      JASON COOK

      Senior Member Services Manager


      Small Business Services

      Valerie

      Valerie is a Tucson native and graduated from Tucson High Magnet School. (Go, Badgers!) She’s a third-generation folklorico dancer. It's in her blood!  She attends various traditional family events, such as huge family reunions, all over the state.

      Hobbies:

      Folklorico, travel and Zumba

      Fun fact:

       Valerie performed in “The Sleeping Beauty” with Dancing in The Streets Ballet School.

      VALERIE VARGAS

      Member Services Associate


      Member Celebrations

      Tammy

      Tammy landed in Tucson at an early age as the result of her father’s military transfer to DMAFB.  After graduating from the University of Arizona she worked behind the scenes for a local architecture firm for 10 years before moving into the property management arena. In 1999, Tammy joined the Chamber team.

      Hobbies:
      Gardening, travel, basket weaving, crafts

      Fun Fact:

      WHEREAS Tammy has assisted with more than 1,000 ribbon cuttings, she is literally comfortable running with scissors!

      TAMMY JENSEN

      Member Operations Manager


      OPERATIONS


      Carissa

      Carissa has called Tucson home her entire life and, now as a mother of two, she is proud to be raising her family in the same community she grew up in. While she loves Tucson’s warm weather, Carissa has chosen a career path where she can help others succeed from the comfort of an air-conditioned office. Through the years Carissa has managed offices, planned and executed events, and held various roles in marketing and communications.

      Hobbies:
      “Quality control” for home improvement projects (her husband loves this), reading, cheering her kids on from the sidelines of the soccer field

      Fun Fact:
      Carissa has a fear of birds – yes, even cute little ones such as ducklings. 

      CARISSA FAIRBANKS

      Director of Operations


        Shirley

        Shirley started out life (and spent many summers) on a dairy farm in Ohio before moving to Tucson in 1961.  She enrolled in the Cooperative Office Program her senior year at Cholla High, through which she became employed part-time by the Tucson Chamber of Commerce. During her college years at the University of Arizona, she continued working at the Chamber and has been here ever since.


        Hobbies:
        Needlecrafts, scrapbooking, bowling, reading


        Fun Fact:
        Shirley has been called a “ding-a-ling” as one of her many musical talents is playing handbells.

        SHIRLEY WILKA

        Executive Assistant


        Diana

        Diana is a California girl originally, although she lived on military bases throughout the U.S. for 18 years until she settled in Tucson. She worked in the jewelry industry, had her own daycare business for 17 years, and did office administration for a mortgage company. Perhaps you’ve seen her on the Chamber’s Univision commercial. She’d be happy to give you her autograph.
        Hobbies: 
        Dancing, listening to live music, doing construction projects

        Fun fact: 
        She lived on a farm for three years in Sonora, Mexico, where her dad owned a vineyard. She loves the country life.

        DIANA CORTEZ

        Administrative Coordinator


        David 

        David is from Los Angeles, California, although he lived in Mexico for a couple of years before moving to Tucson for the heat and the saguaros. He graduated from Pima Community College with a degree in graphic design and multimedia. A wonderful serenity has taken possession of his entire soul, like these sweet mornings of monsoon which he enjoys with his whole heart.


        Hobbies:
        Drums, guitar, skating, working out, Gameboy, running


        Fun facts: |
        David recorded his band’s demo in a random house near Tucson High Magnet School.

        DAVID LONG

        Creative Manager


        EXECUTIVE TEAM


        Tucson Metro Chamber President and CEO Amber Smith

        AMBER SMITH

        President & CEO


        Image of Executive Staff Member Michael Guymon, Vice President at the Tucson Metro Chamber

        MICHAEL GUYMON

        Vice President

        Local Community & Government Affairs


        Image of Public Affairs Staff Member Robert Medler, Vice President of Public Affairs at the Tucson Metro Chamber

        ROBERT MEDLER

        Vice President

        State & Federal Affairs


          SHIRLEY WILKA

          Executive Assistant


          INVESTOR RELATIONS


          Image of Business Development Staff Member Carrie Gilchrist, Director of Business Development at the Tucson Metro Chamber

          CARRIE GILCHRIST

          Director of Business Development


          Image of Business Development Staff Member Adam Begody, Business Development Executive at the Tucson Metro Chamber

          HEATHER WUELPERN

          Director of Communications


          Image of Special Projects Staff Member Carol Gatewood, Director of Special Projects at the Tucson Metro Chamber

          CAROL GATEWOOD

          Director of Special Projects


          Sector Partnerships

          ADAM BEGODY

          Senior Account Executive


            Sponsorships

            JASON COOK

            Senior Member Services Manager


            Small Business Services

            VALERIE VARGAS

            Member Services Associate


            Member Celebrations

            TAMMY JENSEN

            Member Operations Manager


            OPERATIONS

            Image of Business Development Staff Member Carrie Gilchrist, Director of Business Development at the Tucson Metro Chamber

            CARISSA FAIRBANKS

            Director of Operations


              CYNTHIA BEVING

              Finance Manager


              DIANA CORTEZ

              Administrative Coordinator


              DAVID LONG

              Creative Manager