Editor's note: This article has been updated throughout.
The Denison Area Chamber of Commerce announced Monday that Chamber President Ken Higdon has resigned from his position after only seven months on the job. In a news release issued Monday, the Chamber said Higdon is leaving in order to pursue other interests.
“After a lot of thought and consideration and over 20 years in the Chamber Management business, I have decided to retire from the Chamber of Commerce Industry and the Denison Area Chamber of Commerce,” Higdon said in a statement at the end of the release. “I have been blessed to lead the Chamber here for the past 6 months. I want to thank the Board for giving me the opportunity to serve and all the members and volunteers who have helped the Chamber and most especially the staff whose dedication and loyalty is beyond question.”
Calls to Higdon for comment were not immediately returned.
Higdon started in Denison as chamber president in November 2017 following a nearly 10-month search for a new president. The announcement that Higdon would be taking the reins in the chamber came during its annual banquet in early October when he was formally introduced to the community.
The first search resulted in more than 50 applicants, however only three had the proper background, officials said at the time. Once the chamber had determined two finalists, one withdrew their application while the other was determined to not be a good fit.
It was in the second search that Higdon, who previously worked with the Lamar County Chamber of Commerce, was discovered.
As the chamber looks for a new president following Higdon's department, Membership and Special Events Director Shelly Kisel has been appointed as acting manager.
“The Chamber of Commerce is an important organization for our community and business members,” Kisel said. “We will continue to support events, educational activities and opportunities for our business community to network and grow.”
In his statement, Higdon said he would be remaining in the Texoma area. The statement did not provide further detail.
“Although a vacancy in this position is unfortunate, the Chamber Board wishes Ken the best of luck with his future endeavors,” Jason Taylor, chair of the chamber’s board of directors said in the release. Repeated calls to Taylor for comment on the resignation were not immediately returned. “We remain committed to finding someone who will be a strong player for Team Denison and take us to the next level.”