Rick Meredith will become president of the Anderson County Chamber of Commerce on April 1. He will replace the current president, Jackie Nichols, who is retiring effective May 1.
The Chamber’s Board of Directors announced the selection of Meredith, who is an Anderson County commissioner, on Monday.
“My compliments and appreciation to the search committee for their time commitment and to Chamber Board Chairman Stephen Harris for his leadership during the hiring process,” Nichols said. “Meredith was a highly qualified candidate, and I believe the perfect selection to continue the Chamber’s current momentum and growth.”
Meredith has 20 years of leadership and experience in economic and community development as well as knowledge of both state and local planning, a press release said.
“He has a proven track record in the implementation of new programs to foster the creation of jobs and sustained economic growth in both urban and rural areas,” the release said. “His areas of expertise include budget management and planning, the supervision of a large staff, and state and federal grants.”
Meredith joined the Hollingsworth Companies in 2010 as senior vice president for community development. In that position, he is responsible for recruiting industry throughout Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi, the press release said. He also manages a private industrial park and serves as an adviser to the president of the company on other economic development projects.
Meredith formerly served in Governor Phil Bredesen’s administration as assistant commissioner of the Community Development Division of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. He was responsible for overseeing the Main Street, Retire Tennessee, and Three-Star programs, as well as programs pertaining to Energy Policy, Local Planning, and Grants and Loans.
In that role, Meredith pioneered several state programs designed to help business owners, the press release said. He developed and implemented the Tennessee One Stop Business Resource, an interdepartmental state government cooperative that allows business owners to easily register their business online. Since its implementation, more than 900 businesses have registered and only two other states in the nation have a similar tool.
Meredith also organized the first-ever Business Enterprise Resource Office Business Matchmaking event providing small businesses with procurement opportunities. He also assisted in the implementation of the $62.5 million federally funded Volunteer State Solar Initiative, comprised of the Tennessee Solar Institute at the University of Tennessee, the West Tennessee Solar Farm, and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Prior to joining the Bredesen administration, Meredith served as the Anderson County register of deeds. He managed all public recording of instruments and an annual budget of approximately $250,000.
Meredith is currently serving his second term on the Anderson County Commission. He is chairman of the Government Operations and Agriculture Committees and is a member of the Legislative and Human Resources Committees.
He attended the University of Tennessee Institute for Public Service and is a certified public administrator. A lifelong resident of Anderson County, Meredith lives in Clinton with his wife Kim.