Familiar face to lead Palisade chamber

CHRISTOPHER TOMLINSON/The Daily Sentinel—Juliann Adams, who has been director of sales and community relations at Wine Country Inn, is the fourth executive director in two years for the Palisade Chamber of Commerce.

The Palisade Chamber of Commerce did not have to look far to find its next executive director, naming Juliann Adams as the group’s new leader.

Adams, who for more than four years has been the director of sales and community relations at the Wine Country Inn, has been active in a number of chamber committees through her job at the hotel.

“I’m going into the job with all the history and all the relationships already built. And that’s a huge part of the chamber’s role,” Adams said. “I think I can help build a stronger presence for the chamber in the community.”

Her former employer points to that experience as an asset as well.

“It will be a great thing for the town to have her as an ally, because there won’t be any break-in period. She’ll hit the ground running,” said Jean Tally, whose family owns and operates the Wine Country Inn. “I don’t expect her to miss a beat.”

Adams will stay on at the hotel through the end of the month and then take a planned trip to Italy with her husband. She’ll start full-time at the chamber on Nov. 12.

“My relationship with the hotel is near and dear to my heart, having been here from the ground up,”  Adams said. “The success of Palisade also means success for the hotel, so I want to continue my relationship there as a partner.”

The synergy between Adams’ experience at the hotel and the near-term goals of the chamber is obvious. Getting tourists to come and visit the Grand Valley’s fruit and wine mecca — and spend some tourist dollars in the community — is a clear objective of the chamber.

“It’s agritourism that’s really our focus on this side of the valley. That’s the part that we can build on and keep going,” Adams said.

Adams will be the fourth executive director of the organization in two years. The most recent executive director, Kathy Fernandez, was fired along with her two daughters because of “a lack of communication and cohesion” with the town’s board of trustees.

Adams will have the chance to hire a full-time administrative assistant. She said she hoped that a part-time employee currently on staff at the chamber would choose to stay in that position when she takes over in November.


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