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Beverly Hills Weekly
Beverly Hills, California
February 17, 2000     Beverly Hills Weekly
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February 17, 2000

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New Chamber of Commerce Director Outlines Goals Seely shares her experience as a young, female executive. by Michele Lu Kelli Seely grew up in Orange County. She attended Cal State Long Beach where she was a Theater major. After graduation, Seely worked in Europe for TWA's International Sales division and then as assistant manager for Nikko Ilikai Hotels in Honolulu. From 1995-1999, Seely was director for the Monterey Peninsula Chamber of Commerce. She came to Beverly Hills in December of 1999 as the new director of the Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce. Q: You are in a position that has tradi- tionally been dominated by older males. Do you find it intimidating and how have people been responding? A: People have responded very well. I know that the Board of Directors wanted a new, cutting-edge and fresh approach. I think this is reflected in the age of the staff. The average age of the- staff is 30. The staff here is wonderful. They are very innovative and up to speed with the latest technology. I think that the Board wanted someone to cul- tivate that. They are keeping up with the trends of business today. Q: How does the Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce differ from other cities? A: While other Chambers of Commerce usually have one focus such as tourism or bringing in new business, the Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce vacancy rate of businesses. Our concen- tration right now is on retaining and assisting current businesses. There is strong legislative activity within the City and we are strong in the area of technolo- gy. We have expanded globally. People interested in doing business here can get information from our web site. Q: What's different since you've been here? A: We are beginning to reach out to membership, especially smaller business- es in the area. We want to know more about what their needs are and how we can better serve them. We also have a part in our web site,, that enables the international community to use it as a conduit for doing business. We are creating more benefits for the ||While other Chambers of Commerce usually have one focus such as tourism or bringing in new business, the Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce is well-rounded. SJ is well-rounded. There is strong econom- ic development. Beverly Hills has a low Restaurant and Hospitality Association. We are trying to work more with the media, to establish a better working rela- tionship. And we have emphasized the education of staff. They need to be lead- ers and they need to be up on the latest technology because they are ones who go out into the community and pass on the information. Q: How does Monterey compare to Beverly Hills? A: The demographics, the people who live in the communities, are similar. They both have a strong sense of community and the residents are extremely protec- tive. They are both a tourism destination but Beverly Hills on a grander scale. Q: What future plans do you have as director of the Chamber of Commerce? A: What's good about being a resident of Beverly Hills is that it allows me to see both the business and residential sides. I get a better balance and insight from busi- ness, homeowners and residents. One of my goals in the next few months is to get members of the Board to meet with resi- dents and the Homeowners Associations to get more feedback. Another goal is to become more involved in representing Beverly Hills businesses on statewide legislative issues. The decisions made by state government affect us here as well. . flyers. business cards .. letterhead .. advertisements .. magazine layout., web design .. 2I] 3o447ol 3] I] or email: 8 Beverly Hills Weekly