BRANDON — Tammy Bracewell said she stepped down as president and CEO of the Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce Wednesday after 13 years in hopes of spending more time with her two grandchildren.
Bracewell, 50, who has been with the organization for 24 years, will take over special projects for the chamber starting on June 7. Her new role allows her to continue to work with the chamber while having the flexibility to work offsite.
"It's the best of both worlds for me," Bracewell said. "I can take a step back and have a little more time with my family but stay involved with the chamber in a different capacity."
In her new role with special projects, Bracewell will focus on several projects she was already working on as president, including managing the Florida Association of Chamber Professionals, which is run out of the Brandon chamber. She'll also continue to work with the newsletter, publications, website and directory.
"That's how I grew up here," Bracewell said. "I started in the directory department with communications, so I'll kind of be going back to my roots."
Though Bracewell said this wasn't an idea she had been considering for years, she has thought about it for the past several months and has been working on the transition with the executive committee.
Vice president of engagement and programming Laura Simpson will serve as the interim president and CEO.
"While we were not anticipating Tammy's decision to change roles, we are pleased that we are able to fulfill her desire to spend more time with her family, while still having the benefit of her experience and expertise," said chairman Darren Denington of Service with Style and Copper Bell Cafe-Riverview. "We are excited about the steps leading up to the transition that have already occurred and, with her and Laura having worked closely for many years, we anticipate this being a seamless process."
Bracewell said she will be forever grateful for the opportunity to lead the organization and to serve its members, many of whom she considers lifelong friends.
"It has been an honor to serve with Tammy for the past 13 years and I am eager to continue to work together, although within a little different structure, to advance the business community of the Greater Brandon area," Simpson said.
Former Chairman Bob Bivins, of Bivins & Hemenway, P.A., helped Bracewell with the details of her change in roles.
"Since becoming CEO, Tammy Bracewell has devoted her heart and soul to this organization and its people," Bivins said. "Her guidance, vision, and tireless efforts are largely responsible for the success the chamber has enjoyed and the role it has played in our community over the last 20-plus years."
Caitlin Johnston can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 661-2443.