New chamber chief focuses on economy

"We have to work on helping businesses out of the recession," Jones said today.

He's seen the reports that the recession officially ended during the summer of 2009, but the evidence surrounding him indicates the local economy hasn't traveled far enough through the tunnel to see daylight.

Jones is general manager and partner for Mahar Homes and Veranda Park Retirement Living and is a former president of the Jackson County Homebuilders Association. In 2009, he was awarded the Jackson County Homebuilder of the Year for the fourth time and was named State of Oregon Homebuilder of the Year. He has been a chamber board member since the mid-2000s and was Chamber Member of the Year in 2006.

He sees the importance of collaboration between public and private interests to leverage opportunities.

"We don't believe private business alone or government alone can create the type of recovery we need for the citizens of Jackson County," Jones said. "There will be a lot of dialogue. Where we can agree, we will be strong, and where we disagree, we will work through those issues."

— Greg Stiles

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