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Business association looking for new chief

Executive director of the Downtown Guelph Business Association, Audrey Jamal has announced that she will be leaving the position, having accepted a new job at the University of Guelph.

“I’ll be starting there a bit later this year, before the holidays,” Jamal said in an interview Wednesday morning.

She was reluctant to say exactly what the new job would be, not knowing whether the university had made its official announcement yet, but said the position would be in Alumni Affairs and Development.

She sees the work she will be doing at the university as an extension of the type of community-minded work she has been doing downtown, she said.

“It’s been a wonderful experience,” she said of her four years as executive director.

She said she will continue to be a “downtowner” and will continue to stay connected to the downtown community.

Downtown Guelph Business Association members were told of Jamal’s decision to move on at Tuesday night’s annual general meeting, where new board members were elected.

Those board members will form the hiring committee that will choose the new executive director, said Jamal.

“We’re meeting this afternoon to get the posting out,” she said.

The association also handed out its first Downtown Guelph Business Recognition Awards at the meeting to honour successful member businesses.

The emerging business award went to B-Chocolate, newly opened this year on Carden Street; Planet Bean was selected as the green business; The Bookshelf got the anchor business award; and the stewardship award went to Tom Dowd, who renovated the building which holds the Alma Gallery. “We were happy to celebrate a lot of the success stories that are happening in downtown Guelph,” said Jamal.

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