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Temkin will retire this month from Amherst chamber

AMHERST — Joan Temkin, who has been the face of the Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce for a dozen years, is retiring from her position as director of marketing and membership at the end of July.

Temkin, 69, said she will be in and out of the office over the next few weeks to finish up the details for the chamber’s annual golf tournament at the Hickory Ridge Golf Course on July 21.

“That will be my last hurrah,” she said in a telephone interview. “I really love this job. It’s been my dream job, but I’m ready for a new phase.

The chamber will hold a public reception for her July 10 at the Pub, 15 East Pleasant St., from 5 to 7 p.m.

“I can’t say enough about the contributions Joan has made to the success of the chamber during her tenure with us,” said Larry Archey, president of the chamber board. “Her support and advocacy for local business has had a great impact throughout the area.”

Donald Courtemanche, who took over as chamber director in April, said Temkin has “made a huge impression on me” in the few months they have worked together.

“I would challenge you to find someone in the community so highly regarded by the business community,” he said. “She has been the face of the chamber through thick and thin, through the high points and the low points and I think she is the reason we are such a strong chamber today.” The organization has about 500 members.

Temkin, who lives in Amherst, joined the chamber in 2002 when John Coull was director. During her tenure, she was responsible for expanding membership, creating a relocation and visitors’ guides and acting as liaison for the annual golf tournament and awards dinner.

She has been active in many community organizations, including the Amherst Town Meeting, the Jewish Community of Amherst, the League of Women Voters of Amherst and the Amherst-Pelham Regional School Committee. She was a member of the school committee for 12 years, serving as chairwoman for six.

Temkin is the second chamber employee to leave in recent weeks. Administrative assistant Hope Keenan left in mid-June to become marketing and events coordinator for the Amherst Business Improvement District.

Temkin said her position is not expected to be filled, but Keenan’s will be. Along with Courtemanche, Tammy Lynn Chace works in the office as membership and events manager.

Temkin said she expects to spend time helping her husband, Paul Goulston, with his Internet business, selling items on eBay and Amazon. Goulston has been retired from his job as a social worker for the Department of Children and Families for two years, she said. She also plans to travel more, particularly to visit a grandson who lives in St. Louis, Missouri. She said between them, she and Goulston have five children and five grandchildren.

“Working for the Chamber of Commerce has been just the right thing for me,” she said. “It has allowed me to get to know a whole segment of the community that I had not known before except as a consumer. People who work in business are an amazing group of people.”

Those planning to attend her reception at the Pub should email Courtemanche at don@amherstarea.com.

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