After nearly 22 years with the Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce, President & CEO Joyce Waugh will retire at the end of the year. Waugh joined the Chamber in July 2000 became President & CEO in October 2008, succeeding Beth Doughty. Waugh says she remains bullish about the local business community. She also notes Chamber lobbying efforts that helped lead to funding for I-81 improvements now taking shape. The Regional Chamber has also announced that Eric Sichau currently the Vice President of Membership Services, will assume Waugh’s position upon her retirement
ROANOKE, VA (June 15, 2022) – After nearly 22 years with the Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce, President & CEO Joyce Waugh has notified the Board of Directors of her plans to retire, effective December 31, 2022. Waugh joined the Chamber in July 2000 as Vice President of Public Policy & Strategic Issues and became President & CEO in October 2008.
The Chamber’s Board of Directors has been developing a succession plan for two years and is pleased to announce Eric Sichau, the current Vice President of Membership Services, will assume Joyce’s position upon her retirement at the end of the year.
“It’s truly been an honor and privilege to serve the Roanoke Regional Chamber and be part of what makes Virginia’s Blue Ridge THE place we choose to live, work and play. VBR is on an upswing as a medical, higher education and technology hub, and has tremendous outdoor opportunities. The Chamber is at the heart of it all, promoting, stimulating and improving business, helping all boats rise,” said Waugh.
Steady leadership has defined Waugh’s tenure, even during challenging circumstances. The Chamber emerged from the Great Recession, as well as a once-in-a-century pandemic, stronger than before. “On behalf of the Board of Directors, we thank Joyce for not only her dedication to western Virginia’s largest and oldest business advocacy organization; but to her vision and leadership that has provided a strong foundation for continued success. As much as we’ll miss her, we’re excited for her as she begins her next, well-earned adventure,” said Greg Brock, 2022 Chair of the Roanoke Regional Chamber Board of Directors.
Throughout her career, Waugh has demonstrated a steadfast commitment to the success of the business and civic community, serving on several boards – including the Roanoke Regional Partnership, Visit Virginia’s Blue Ridge, Downtown Roanoke, Inc., and many others. Half of her 44-year career in the region has been with the Chamber. Previously, Waugh was Public Relations Director for Roanoke Valley Psychiatric Center (now part of LewisGale Health System) and Assistant Director at Roanoke County’s Department of Economic Development.
Waugh was named the Virginia Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (VACCE) Chamber Executive of the Year in 2012. She was also the first woman in our region to earn the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) designation of Certified Economic Developer (CEcD). “My background led me to the Chamber and I am so grateful. This position afforded me the opportunity to work with incredibly talented teams and boards over the past 22 years. The Chamber has been and will continue to be the most influential business organization in western Virginia, helping to make our region better,” said Waugh.