Chamber of Commerce president, CEO decides the time is right for retirement

Search for replacement will begin immediately

April 11, 1999|By Jill Hudson Neal | Jill Hudson Neal,SUN STAFF

Michael G. Riemer, president and chief executive officer of the Howard County Chamber of Commerce for the past 15 months, has announced that he will step down Sept. 1.

Riemer, 66, a member of the chamber since 1980 and on the board since 1990, said he will stay on as CEO until a replacement is found, or longer if necessary. He also said he plans to remain an active member of the chamber after his retirement.

Chamber of Commerce Board Chairman W. Stephen Pindell said the chamber will immediately commission a nationwide search for a new CEO. The Sept. 1 target date coincides with the chamber's new fiscal year and installation of new officers.

"There comes a time in your life when you simply want more time for yourself and your family," Riemer said last week. "I want more time to do some things I have been putting off, especially [have] more time to spend with my wife, Louise."

He said he plans to make a habit of taking his silver convertible sports car on road trips and to enjoy his retirement. "A lot of people warned me to step back from the high-powered business career and do things that I wanted to do while I still can," he said.

Riemer, founder and chairman of Riemer, Muegge & Associates, a regional land planning and design service, said one of his goals when he was appointed was to improve communications, both internally and with the community.

During his tenure, Riemer upgraded the chamber's telephone, computer and e-mail systems, including new hardware and software. He directed the redesign of its Web site and changed the format of the chamber's publication from a newspaper insert tabloid to a direct-mail newsletter.

Pindell said Riemer's decision to leave is understandable. "He's been working long hours, usually more than 60 hours a week since taking on this assignment."

Pub Date: 4/11/99

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