Downtown Association Announces New Director

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(Branson, MO) The Downtown Branson Main Street Association (DBMA) has hired a lifetime resident of Branson as its executive director.

Dawn Erickson will take on the DBMA responsibilities beginning March 17. Erickson’s background includes editorial management of Tri-Lakes Newspapers in the 1980s when downtown businesses first formed an organization. She became the first director of communications for the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and managed publications, public relations and media relations during most of the 1990s.

Subsequent years as a free-lance writer emphasizing tourism and economic development promotion have included film projects as well as many magazine and travel guide projects. With an associate, Erickson helped to produce comprehensive plans and various marketing studies for small government and educational entities in southwest Missouri.

She has twice served as interim director of economic development for Taney County under the direction of the Taney County Industrial Development Authority.

“I am so pleased to become part of the downtown business community,” Erickson said. “Branson’s downtown has always been vital and strong, and it has reinvented itself to stay that way. One of my favorite success stories is how the downtown organization positioned itself as a key tourism attraction as well as the heart of the community when so much media attention was focused on the West 76 ‘Strip.’ The strategy was remarkably successful, and I am aware of how much hard work it takes to support that momentum.”

Erickson said she is looking forward to calling on merchants, service providers and other members of the downtown community to gather their thoughts on community issues, needs and priorities. “I’m a believer in regular communication and lots of research. I will be asking a lot of questions. And I hope the downtown business operators will pick up the phone or call me inside their shops and offices whenever they want to share an idea or express a concern.”

“Erickson’s skills and long history in the Branson area will be valuable to the downtown community,” said DBMA President Jeff Justus. “With a new director in place, we are looking forward to strengthening relationships within the downtown area, and with the city and lakes area community as well.”

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