From a candidate field of nearly 20, Ramona Chamber of Commerce’s executive board selected a former Air Force staff sergeant with a bachelor’s degree in microbiology and 28 years experence in facilities management as the business organization’s executive director.
Craig Jung, a 19-year Ramona resident, started his job on St. Patrick’s Day and already has met with the Greater East County Chambers of Commerce Alliance and said he is “hitting the ground running” working with the Country Fair Committee, Oktoberfest Committee and Ramona Open Studios Tour, and increasing membership. He replaces Nelson “Mac” MacWilliams, who resigned to accept a job with U.S. Congressman Duncan D. Hunter.
Ramona Chamber of Commerce President Thad Clendenen introduced Jung to a crowd of about 175 at the chamber mixer in Cheers of Ramona last Thursday evening.
After narrowing the original list of candidates, the chamber’s five-member executive board interviewed about 10 hopefuls and held second interviews with five of those, said Clendenen.
“We ranked everybody on the final interview, narrowed it to three and then voted,” he said. “...Myself, having a sales background, I always look for personalities.”
In addition to his career experience, Jung has experience working with county, state and federal agencies and he has volunteered feverishly with the chamber, said Clendenen.
“He probably is the best fit across the board in being able to handle the event aspect of the chamber and the membership and in being approachable,” he added. “We’re enthusiastic to have him on board and think he’ll represent the chamber well.”
Jung’s background includes facilities management in healthcare and biotechnology industries. He lists team building, planning and project directing among his major strengths, with additional skills in operations/staffing and budgeting/cost control. As director of plant services/safety officer for Harborview Medical Center and then Fallbrook Hospital, he reported to the chief executive officers and directed the operations of the central plant, housekeeping, security, biomedical and transportation departments.
He was maintenance specialist in charge of maintaining central plant operations at UCSD Thornton Hospital, facility engineer/manager at Baxter Diagnostics Inc. and assistant chief engineer for Hillside Hospital. Immediately prior to being selected Ramona chamber’s executive director, he had a temporaty assignment at Promise Hospital of San Diego.
He and his wife LaDawn live in Ramona with their five dogs and three cats, and are active in the chamber. LaDawn Jung has two businesses, Gold Canyon Candles and fotoquilts.com. A member of the Committee for a Better Ramona, Craig Jung designed the group’s brochures that have been distributed at area events.
He was scheduled to meet with the chamber’s Economic Development Committee yesterday and planned to discuss ideas for a kiosk featuring the town’s trails, wineries and other assets.
The chamber’s mission statement is to develop and maintain a climate for viable economic growth, to promote loyalty to and networking for local businesses, and to demonstrate an outstanding leadership role in the community.
The chamber office at 960 Main St. is open Tuesdays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jung invites businesspeople and others to stop in and say hello. He and Holly Romo are the chamber’s only paid employees.
The chamber may be contacted by phone at 789-1311 and e-mail at email@example.com. It’s Web site is ramonachamber.com.