Rumler’s departure

A hearty congratulations to Quad Cities Chamber President and CEO Paul Rumler, 42, on his appointment as the new CEO and executive vice president of CCIM Institute. 

The Chicago-based Institute is a global membership association serving the commercial real estate community through networking, technology and providing the industry’s gold standard in education.

By any measure it is a great job with a global scope and Mr. Rumler should be a great fit. He has a masterful ability to separate politics from the practical nature of positions and developments. That is essential in the field of commercial real estate and economic development, and he keenly understands the need to provide value to membership-based organizations.

He has also done a great job of navigating the precarious politics of economic development between Iowa and Illinois while positioning the greater region for success over the past four years. For example, the new Amazon distribution center, while technically located in Davenport, has been touted as a regional success story, which it is.

“What I’m most proud of is the Quad Cities Chamber as an organization is the strongest it’s ever been. We have a strong capacity to help the business community,” Mr. Rumler told the QCBJ, touting its advancements in economic development, placemaking, talent recruitment and more.

The overarching problem with the Quad Cities native’s departure to the Windy City is that it is emblematic of the biggest challenge facing the Quad Cities region: the retention and attraction of workers, especially young professionals.

The allure of coastal or bigger cities like Chicago or Austin or Denver to young professionals and even corporate headquarters is an ever-present challenge to more rural regions like the Quad Cities. 

Make no mistake, the Quad Cities is making solid efforts with its marketing campaign and placemaking strategies that should position the region for success in the future, but replacing a rising star like Mr. Rumler won’t be easy.

Muscatine Chamber CEO also leaving for new opportunity

Erik Reader, president and CEO of the Greater Muscatine Chamber of Commerce, 38, announced recently that he is also leaving the chamber to return to Peoria, Illinois, after only two years in his position.

Mr. Reader’s departure is another example of a young professional leaving the region.

Is Mr. Reader’s departure an opportunity for the Muscatine Chamber and the Quad Cities Chamber to explore an even stronger partnership? 

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