Bradford named chamber director
A familiar face to many Franklin County residents has been hired as the county's new chamber of commerce director.
Cheryl Bradford, a lifelong Russellville resident, has been hired to fill the vacancy left when former director Lisa Stockton resigned in December.
Bradford was one of 15 applicants for the position.
"At the end of the day, Cheryl had the zeal and life experience that Franklin County needs in a chamber director," Ken Askew, president of the chamber board, said.
Bradford spent 25 years with the Tennessee Valley Authority in a number of roles before retiring when her department was moved away from the area.
"I didn't want to move," she said. "This is my home."
Bradford, a mother of three grown children ages 27, 25 and 18, said the county has many great resources, including successful small businesses to build on.
"Our small businesses are the backbone of the community," said Bradford, whose husband, Jackie, is a county commissioner and retired director of the Russellville Parks and Recreation Department.
"We need to do everything we can to help our businesses succeed."
Stockton developed a junior leadership program several years ago for high school juniors. Bradford said that program is one she hopes to promote and get even more students involved in.
"I would like to extend it to our challenged kids," she said. "We need to make them a vibrant part of the community."
Chamber officials said there are more than 200 members currently listed with the organization.
Board member Danny Brown said Bradford's past experiences and knowledge of the county were qualities that would help her in her new position.
"Her desire to stay in Franklin County, even though she could have moved, and her work experience dealing with all classes of people will be valuable," Brown said.
Bradford, who has been working two part-time jobs since retiring, will begin work on Feb. 18.
"I guess I am not a good retiree," she said. "Lisa (Stockton) did a great job and we both have the exact same goal and that's to help move Franklin County forward."