The McAllen Chamber of Commerce announced the resignation of its President and CEO Steve Ahlenius on Wednesday.
Ahlenius led the organization for over two decades.
“I have loved leading the McAllen Chamber of Commerce for almost 24 years,” Ahlenius wrote in a release. “It has been an honor and a privilege. I have been blessed with numerous opportunities to create value for our chamber members and our community.”
In the release, Ahlenius described a variety of ventures and initiatives undertaken by the chamber during his tenure, among them moving into a new chamber building, launching the Valley’s first Creative Incubator, renovating the old church building into an event center, launching the Valley’s first food truck park and starting MXLAN.
The McAllen chamber has twice received the 5-Star Accreditation by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Ahlenius noted.
“It has been a wonderful experience, living and working in McAllen,” he wrote. “I love McAllen, but it is time for a change.”
The chamber’s board now has to find a new individual to lead the near-century old organization, which has a membership of 1,300 and a staff of 18.
A search for Ahlenius’ replacement will begin immediately, the release states, and will include the participation of an executive search firm.
“The Board respects Mr. Ahlenius’ decision, we recognize that there is an experienced and knowledgeable staff in place,” Board Chairman Annette Franz wrote. “I am confident that the staff will continue to operate the existing programs while the Board undertakes the process of selecting a replacement.”