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Chamber Names Director of Workforce Development

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(TUSCALOOSA) The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama has announced that it has named LeNa` Powe as its Director of Workforce Development effective August 15.  Powe will serve as The Chamber’s primary liaison to the Region 3 Workforce Development Council and West Alabama Works, of which the Chamber now serves as both managing and fiscal agent for. She will provide a central point of contact for any private or public entity seeking information and assistance with workforce training in the seven-county region. Powe will be responsible for building alliances and coordinating with local training providers, employment agencies, Chambers of Commerce, IDBs/IDAs, education officials and elected leaders.

Powe brings strong leadership and experience in workforce development, education and public policy to the Chamber. She most recently worked for the Birmingham City Council as a community liaison and external community affairs representative. In that role, Powe helped launch the Birmingham Live campaign to increase workforce development partnerships and opportunities in the City of Birmingham.

Prior to this, she worked for the Birmingham Business Alliance (BBA) as an education and workforce development project manager where she was responsible for marketing and managing signature workforce events, had oversight of workforce and student recruitment efforts, and coordinated educational outreach initiatives and partnerships. She also developed the Talent Recruitment Newsletter and managed the Talent Recruitment Project, as well as supported several workforce development projects under BBA’s Blueprint Birmingham strategic plan.

Before moving into the aforementioned role at BBA, Powe served as a project manager for minority and small business development for the organization. Powe is a native of Birmingham and a two-time graduate of The University of Alabama, receiving a BA in Community Development and an MA in Communication Studies. The list of honors and awards she has earned is impressive. Powe was named a USA Today All-American Team nominee, Second Runner-Up for the 2009 Miss Alabama Community Service Award, 2013 Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama Role Model Award and served as Miss Tuscaloosa 2007, among other honors.

Chamber President and CEO Jim Page said, “Ensuring that we have an adequately prepared workforce has become of critical importance to business and industry leaders throughout this entire region. It has long been a top priority for the Chamber’s Board of Directors, investors and local workforce development officials.  The vision, experience and energy that LeNa` will bring to this effort on a full-time, daily basis will allow us to continue to put words into action. We are very proud to add someone of her caliber to an already outstanding team of professionals.”