The Newton-Needham Chamber Board of Directors has elected Rachel Hillman as its new chair effective Jan. 1, 2016.
Hillman is the owner of Hillman Homes, a boutique real estate firm helping buyers, sellers, renters and investors in Newton, Needham and surrounding towns. Hillman succeeds Seana Gaherin, who completes her two year term this month and will assume the role of Immediate Past Chair on the chamber board.
"2016 marks my 10th year with the Newton-Needham Chamber and it is an absolute honor to have this opportunity,” Hillman said. “I have huge shoes to fill following the great work accomplished by Seana Gaherin. With the leadership of Chamber President Greg Reibman and his amazing team, this chamber is the best it has ever been and there is much more to look forward to. I am excited to be a part of it.”
A Newtonville resident, Hillman has served as the chamber’s first vice chair for the past two years as well as chair of the chamber’s Membership and Real Estate Committees. She was previously chair of the Ambassadors Committee and has been the chamber’s number one new member recruiter for the past two years. Hillman is also involved in helping local charities including Second Step and Second Chances to fight homelessness.
In addition to the Dec. 16 election of Hillman as chair for a two-year term, the directors elected Chris Teachout, VP of Business Development at Needham Bank as its first vice chair. Barry Brown, president at Mount Ida College, and Joseph De Vito, president and CEO of The Village Bank, were elected vice chairs. Walter Tennant was reelected as treasurer and Linda Sloane Kay, executive VP of Century Bank was elected clerk.
“Our chamber has been blessed with a long tradition of amazing leadership and Rachel is the perfect person to lead our on-going efforts to stay relevant for future generations of business leaders,” said Chamber President Greg Reibman. “She understands the challenges small businesses face. She understands our communities and our region. And she understands this organization and our challenges and opportunities . We’re all really looking forward to working with her.”
“I’m also extremely grateful to Seana Gaherin for her service and friendship these past two years,” Reibman added. “Seana didn’t just challenge this chamber to think out of the box, she kept moving the box and we’re a better organization because of it.”
“I’ve enjoyed every bit of my term as chair,” Gaherin said. “I expect Rachel will enjoy it as well and take this chamber to even greater heights.”