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Local

Chapé is looking for someone with ‘street’ smarts

Councilperson serves as interim director of Newton Main Street

Councilperson Lin Chapé was named the interim director of Newton Main Street, whose executive director, Graham Sullivan, recently resigned from her position. Chapé will temporarily lead the program until a replacement is found.
Councilperson Lin Chapé was named the interim director of Newton Main Street, whose executive director, Graham Sullivan, recently resigned from her position. Chapé will temporarily lead the program until a replacement is found.

Until a new executive director of Newton Main Street is decided, councilperson Lin Chapé will serve as interim director following Graham Sullivan’s departure from the position June 21.

Chapé accepted the temporary role Monday by the Newton Main Street Board of Directors, of which she was once a member until about a year-and-a-half ago.

“It was kind of a compliment,” Chapé said of the board’s proposition. “I said, ‘Yup! Anything to help the place out (and help) the city out. I was on the board early on ... And I’ve worked with Graham all that time. We formed at mentor-mentee relationship, which is really super.”

Given her prior experience on the board, Chapé acknowledged there’s a soft spot in her heart for Newton Main Street. In preparation of Sullivan’s last week at the organization, whose office space is located at 113 First Ave. W., Chapé said she is trying to learn as much information as she can.

As interim, Chapé said her role, along with the board of directors, will be to find an executive director who can continue to move Newton Main Street’s journey forward. The position, she added, is important to the community.

“I call (Newton Main Street) a collaborative effort,” Chapé said. “They drive their goals and then work with the retail group and the Chamber. My whole mission is collaborative effort.”

Sullivan announced her resignation from the organization May 24, citing aspirations to pursue “something new” that will challenge her in a different way and it was time for her to find something she can be passionate about again.

She had held the job for three years. During that time, Newton Main Street had accepted sponsorship duties of events like the Newton Farmers’ Market and had consistently acquired substantial grants to benefit the community, as well as the program itself.

Newton Main Street is a city program that combines economic development with historic preservation to further promote downtown Newton’s stature and presence in the community.

The Newton Main Street program’s goals in the community are to help establish the downtown image, improve its aesthetics, strengthen the economic base and its role in town. Newton Main Street is a subsidiary of Main Street Iowa and Main Street America, which are part of the encompassing National Main Street Center program.

More updates to come.

Contact Christopher Braunschweig at 641-792-3121 ext. 6560 or cbraunschweig@newtondailynews.com

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