Carpenter to stay at CVB with combined role

Nancy Carpenter is staying at the Columbus-Lowndes Convention and Visitors Bureau for at least a year.

Carpenter announced via press release Thursday afternoon that she had signed a one-year contract with the board. Going forward, she will oversee the operations of CVB and its affiliated nonprofit, the Columbus Cultural Heritage Foundation, in a combined role as CEO.

Carpenter previously held separate positions as executive director of the two organizations, each with separate salaries. In a lengthy executive session at an Aug. 15 meeting, the CVB board — which doubles as the CCHF board — voted not to renew his position on the CCHF.

“What has been done is a contract between the board and (Carpenter) to serve as CEO of CVB with various duties, which roughly matches the duties she had in the previous contract (CVB)” , explained the board of directors of the CVB. Attorney John Brady. “She will serve as CEO at CVB, and she will, without additional compensation, serve as coordinator and advisor to the CCHF Board of Directors.”

Carpenter previously received a combined salary of $121,785, including $102,556 for managing CVB and the balance for managing CCHF. She will now receive $110,556 in her new role as CEO, Brady said.

“Previously, she was a full-time employee of CVB…and had a separate contract with the Foundation on a part-time basis,” Brady said. “Now there is only one contract.”

These two contracts lasted three years. The new combined contract has a duration of one year.

Brady said negotiations have been ongoing with Carpenter over his contract since that August meeting.

“The contract was presented to him after the last meeting, and there were discussions between me as CVB’s lawyer and (Carpenter) about the terms,” ​​he said. “The board allowed me to have these conversations with her and present the contract to her, and it has now been signed by her and President Liz Terry.”

The board will have to formally approve the contract by Oct. 1, he said.

Liz Terry

“We are thrilled that Nancy will continue her dual role,” Terry said in the press release. “She did a wonderful job and we are happy for Columbus and Lowndes County.”

“It’s a great time in Columbus, Mississippi,” Carpenter said in the press release. “Visit Columbus and the Visitor Center teams are excellent, and we look forward to continuing their work together.”

Carpenter declined to comment further on Thursday afternoon, telling The Dispatch via text that she was flying to Washington, D.C.

Carpenter took over at CVB and CCHF in 2011. His contracts with both organizations were last renewed in 2019.

The CCHF is a non-profit organization affiliated with the CVB that oversees the Tennessee Williams Home, among other responsibilities. He also played a key role in the annual spring pilgrimage to the city’s pre-war homes.

In 2019, the Preservation Society of Columbus, made up of historic owners, informed the CVB that they wanted to take over the touring portion of the houses of the Spring Pilgrimage. This year was the first time the CPS-led pilgrimage had taken place, after visits were canceled during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Carpenter’s contract had been discussed at several meetings over the summer. The subject was raised at the June 27 meeting of the CVB, but no action was taken. The dispatch reported at the time that the board was considering splitting the directorships of the CVB and CCHF, as well as reducing the terms to one year.

Contract talks resumed at a special meeting on July 13, but no action was taken.

Brian Jones is the local government reporter for Columbus and Lowndes County.

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