BANDON: The Greater Bandon Association has hired its first full-time paid Executive Director, helping Bandon take a major step toward becoming a Performing Main Street town. Achieving Performing Main Street status brings many additional benefits and potential financial resources to Bandon from the National Main Street Center. Harv Schubothe will step down from GBA’s Board of Directors and become its first paid Executive Director on October 1.
GBA’s ability to bring on the new position is the result of its own sustainable funding work and the generous support of the Wild Rivers Coast Alliance. WRCA has made a multiyear investment in helping GBA through a Community Capacity Building for Economic Vitality and Event Coordination grant. The grant totals $54,550 over the next two years.
Two major building blocks will result from WRCA’s funding support. The first is the executive director position as previously mentioned. This position will implement GBA’s recent Main Street Refresh work. That work, funded in part by the Ford Family Foundation, has led to economic transformation strategies and work plans for Bandon based upon community vision and market understanding. Over 300 residents have participated in surveys, focus groups and committees to help develop these strategies over the last six months.
The other pillar is a contracted half time position to coordinate community events. The intent is to reduce duplication of effort, to support current event organizers who have been primarily volunteers and to grow events by thinking outside of the box. Housed at GBA, the position would also serve the Chamber of Commerce and other community partners. The position will allow the executive directors of the organizations to devote more time to their organization’s management responsibilities. In GBA’s case, this means devoting more time to working on strategies for downtown economic development.
Schubothe spoke enthusiastically about GBA’s strong relationship with WRCA in its economic vitality work. “They have been with us at the table as we seek to build a diverse economic base, catalyze smart new investment and cultivate a strong entrepreneurship ecosystem.”
WRCA was created by Mr. Mike Keiser and Bandon Dunes Golf Resort and is a grant making organization. All net proceeds from Bandon Preserve at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort are dedicated to the grant making of Wild Rivers Coast Alliance to support a thriving south coast of Oregon through conservation, community, and economic development projects.