DDA names Tara Currier new director
by Matt Shinall
Jul 12, 2012 | 3416 views | 0 0 comments | 21 21 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Tara Currier
Tara Currier
slideshow
Four months after the sudden resignation of its head administrator, the Cartersville Downtown Development Authority has named Tara Currier as executive director.

Currier, currently the marketing director for Booth Western Art Museum, will take the reigns on Aug. 2. The executive director position has been vacant since Liz Hood left the organization in March.

As DDA director, Currier will help market and promote Cartersville's historic downtown district encompassing 165 properties within the boundaries of Leake, Bartow, Tennessee and Main streets.

"I am very excited about the opportunity. First and foremost, I look forward to meeting with each and every merchant downtown and letting them know I am their ally if they need help with marketing, social media, grants or want to share their ideas on events and ways to promote the downtown as a whole. I am going to be their go-to person," Currier said. "I have learned so much at Booth museum and am grateful for the opportunities that have been given to me while here, and I know I'll be able to carry many things that I've learned to the DDA and implement some wonderful new marketing strategies, creative co-opportunities and hopefully some vibrant new special events to bring in not only residents of Cartersville, Bartow County but of surrounding areas as well."

A Cartersville native, Currier obtained her associate degree from Young Harris College and graduated from the University of Georgia with a bachelor's degree in public relations. Since graduation, Currier has worked with Flammer PR, the Cartersville-Bartow County Chamber of Commerce and the Booth Western Art Museum.

While at the Booth museum, she participated in marketing programs and training with the Georgia Historic High Country and the Southeast Tourism Society. Last year, she helped found the Bartow County Hospitality Association. For the past two years, Currier has attended the Southeast Tourism Society's marketing college and will attend her final course at the end of this month to become a certified travel marketing professional.

"I love this community and all the merchants, and restaurants, and shops and attractions that make up downtown," Currier said. "My previous experience at the chamber led me to have a better understanding and appreciation for the hard work that so many of our small businesses go through.

"I'm anxious that I will be able to continue not only marketing Booth and Bartow History Museum, but all the wonderful small businesses that are in our downtown and really promote the vibrancy that we have here in Cartersville."

The executive director position was recently reorganized as a city of Cartersville staff position. Applicants were interviewed by a panel of DDA board members and city staff, including Cartersville City Manager Sam Grove. Currier was rated, alongside other applicants, on her presentation skills, education, experience and other qualities to narrow the field.

"We actually rated the people we interviewed and she came out on top," Grove said. "She has a passion for Cartersville and a passion for the downtown, obviously very articulate, skilled in PR and marketing, and is trained in both of those areas."

Grove outlined the immediate objectives for the position for the first two to three months. The DDA will first concentrate on budgeting and business outreach.

"We'll probably look at a 60- to 90-day plan in terms of first looking at budget goals and what the realistic goals are there -- and then basically outreach to businesses and agencies in the downtown trying to rebuild those relationships or making them stronger," Grove said.