The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Carthage, Jasper County

November 21, 2009

Chamber president resigns in Carthage

By Susan Redden

CARTHAGE, Mo. — A search will begin to select a new president of the Carthage Chamber of Commerce after John Bode submitted his resignation last week.

Laura Phelps, president of the chamber board, announced the decision and said Bode had agreed to serve until a replacement can be found.

Bode took the job three years ago, and said he and his wife have enjoyed their time in Carthage. He said he is submitting the resignation “with sadness,” but must move back to Northeast Missouri for family reasons.

Bode could not be reached for comment.

Phelps said a search committee has been named and will begin work immediately.

“John has been a great asset to our community and shared a lot of knowledge with the leaders of our city,” she said. “He provided Carthage with a clear vision of what is needed to be successful in economic development, and we are pleased he is willing to continue to serve until we can find someone to fill the position.”

Bode came to Carthage from Northeast Missouri. Before accepting the chamber job, he had served as executive director of the Lewis County Industrial Development Authority in Monticello. As chamber president, his duties included serving as economic development director under a contract with the city.

Tom Short, city administrator, said Bode “has done a great job for Carthage. “He had a handle on what the community needed and he was going about trying to do that. I’m sorry he’s leaving, but it’s a family situation, and those take precedence.”

Bode earlier this year had worked on behalf of a proposed economic development sales tax that, if approved, would have generated funds that Carthage could use to buy land as future industrial sites. Voters rejected the proposal.

“Economic conditions didn’t help; it’s something we still need,” Short said. “I’m glad he’s staying during the transition, because I know he’s working on some projects right now.”

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Carthage, Jasper County