BLACKFOOT — One thing that impresses those who meet Leah Rigby for the first time is her enthusiasm.
"We interviewed a number of very qualified people," said Derek Preece, president of the Greater Blackfoot Area Chamber of Commerce in announcing Rigby's selection as executive director. "She's the one who stood out with the enthusiasm and spark we're looking for."
Rigby replaces Rebecca Price as executive director of the Chamber of Commerce and the Idaho Potato Museum.
"I'm excited about this opportunity," Rigby said Tuesday after her first day on the job. "I love to serve people and to get to know them better. I want to help out Blackfoot's businesses the best I can."
As executive director Rigby will be the day-to-day face of the Chamber.
"She told us that, in the first 30-45 days on the job she wants to meet all the Chamber members," Preece said. "That's a pretty ambitious goal, one that we liked to hear."
Although she was raised in Idaho Falls and Rexburg, she and her husband Brent have lived in Bingham County the past 20 years. They have raised their four daughters—Mindie, Whitnie, Brittnie and Madison—here.
"I have a passion and enthusiasm for Blackfoot," she said. "We love it here. We would love to see Blackfoot grow with fun businesses and keep this community a place our kids want to stay.
"I want to make sure everybody knows what the Chamber has to offer and what Blackfoot has to offer," she said. "My vision is to learn more about Blackfoot's businesses, then help other people know more about what Blackfoot has to offer."
A graduate of Madison High School in Rexburg, she has earned her associate's degree in business management from the University of Phoenix. She is now working toward her bachelor's degree.
Before taking over at the Chamber, Rigby worked in human resources for nine years at Spudnik. Prior to that, she worked five years in human resources and as an emergency dispatcher for Bingham County. She has been a dispatcher for the Idaho State Police. And, she and her husband ran a family farm for 10 years.
"What I really want to do is get more members involved in the Chamber," she said. "And there's a lot of fundraising I'd like to promote.
"Being a long-timer in this county and this city I've seen it blossom," she concluded. "The schools have improved; the landscape has improved. I want to see that continue over the next 20 years."