meet our team

OFFICE STAFF

Shelley Oltmans

Shelley Oltmans

Executive Director

director@keokukchamber.com

Kira Kruszynski

Kira Kruszynski

Membership Coordinator

membership@keokukchamber.com

Amy Hobb

Amy Hobb

Office Manager

officemanager@keokukchamber.com

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

about Brian Carroll

Cole S. O’Donnell serves as the Keokuk City Administrator having previously served in several cities in Iowa, Minnesota, and Illinois.  During his twenty five years in city management Mr. O’Donnell has been active in community service in each of the cities he worked for.  This includes being an active board member of chamber, economic development, and civic organizations.  As a member of these boards, Mr. O’Donnell has been able to form strong public private partnerships that increased the vitality and quality of life of each community.
As a father of four, Mr. O’Donnell is kept busy with their many activities.  This does not stop him from being an active member of the Keokuk Lions and enjoying many of Keokuk’s attractions. In the few slow moments, Mr. O’Donnell likes to take walks with his wife of 26 years and dogs of 5, 3, and 2 years.

Emily Benjamin is the Community Development Specialist at Climax Molybdenum, a Freeport-McMoRan Company where she strives to continually improve corporate social responsibility and community economic development in Lee County by promoting collaboration and communication between industry and stakeholders on positive projects and outcomes.
Following sales and marketing experience in the private agricultural sector as well as four years coordinating outreach programs with Iowa State Extension and Outreach of Lee County, Benjamin, a Lee County native, was excited to have the opportunity to devote her professional attention to driving positive collaborations that improve social, economic, educational, and overall quality of life in Lee County, for a company that is committed to working toward sustainable development in the communities where they operate.
Benjamin sees Lee County residents as the area’s greatest asset and is passionate about having a positive impact on the community that has had an indelible impact on her. She believes we all share a responsibility to be positive ambassadors and advocates of our community and looks forward to engaging in partnerships that highlight as well as improve upon all that Lee County has to offer.
Benjamin sees the Chamber of Commerce and affiliate organizations as a cornerstone for facilitating those partnerships.
Though passionate about her work, Emily’s favorite title is that of “Mommy” to an ornery and energetic 4-year old named Kasen. The two, along with their border collie, Lucy, live near Shimek State Forrest where they can usually be found exploring the outdoors, building epic pillow forts, reading, or playing make-believe.

Brian Carroll

Brian Carroll

Board President

Cole O'Donnell

Cole O'Donnell

Keokuk City Administrator

Emily Benjamin

Emily Benjamin

Board Member

Mark Smidt is in his second stint on the Keokuk Area Chamber of Commerce board, serving on the board and as president in the mid-2000s. He re-joined the board in January 2018.
Smidt and his wife Barb moved to Keokuk in 2001. He served as publisher of the Daily Gate City and several area publications for 14 years before briefly moving to Oregon.
Since June 2017, he has served as CEO of the Hoerner YMCA. Barb has worked at First Community Bank for most of that time and is currently market president. They have two grown children, Laura and Nick.

Jon Little Jr., CLU®, CIC serves as an Insurance Agent at Connection Insurance in Keokuk, IA.  After growing up in Burlington, IA he earned his Bachelor of Business degree, with an emphasis in Finance, from Western Illinois University {1993}.  He then started his insurance career with American Family Insurance in Burlington, IA. After assuming a position with Lofton, Stebbings  & Sohl, the agency that would eventually become Connection Insurance, he furthered his insurance education by earning the Chartered Life Underwriting (CLU) Certification from The American College {2011}.  Since that time, he has also earned the Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) designation from The National Alliance {2016}.

Jon and his wife, Tonya have two high school age boys. Jacob will graduate from Warsaw High School in May of 2019. Their youngest son, Luke, is a Freshman at Warsaw High School. Both boys keep them very busy with many activities including band, sports, FFA, scouting and church.  Jon and his sons also stay busy working on home projects and traveling the country to golf and watch the St. Louis Cardinals play.

Mark Smidt is in his second stint on the Keokuk Area Chamber of Commerce board, serving on the board and as president in the mid-2000s. He re-joined the board in January 2018.
Smidt and his wife Barb moved to Keokuk in 2001. He served as publisher of the Daily Gate City and several area publications for 14 years before briefly moving to Oregon.
Since June 2017, he has served as CEO of the Hoerner YMCA. Barb has worked at First Community Bank for most of that time and is currently market president. They have two grown children, Laura and Nick.

Mark Smidt

Mark Smidt

Board Member

John Little

John Little

Connection Insurance

Amy Conlee

Amy Conlee

I am originally from Warsaw and I currently live on my farm southwest of Sutter, Il.  I graduated from Warsaw High School in 1981 and received my bachelor’s degree from Truman State in 1986.  I am currently an Account Manager at Van Meter Inc., a role I have enjoyed since 2002.

I have two daughter’s Alex Morgan from Hamilton, IL. and Danie Courtois from Tucson, AZ.  I enjoy spending my free time hunting, fishing, and being active outdoors with my Australian Sheppard Pebbles.  I also enjoy wood working and spending time my family and friends. When I am not busy outdoors, you may find me looking for antiques with my fiancé Sue Leon.

Tricia Merydith, is the Manager of Taske Force, Inc.  Tricia is a certified staffing professional through the American Staffing Association celebrating her 26thyear in the staffing industry.  This is also Trish’s third term serving on the Keokuk Chamber of Commerce board.  Tricia has been involved in many Keokuk volunteer roles, including serving as the Keokuk Lion’s Club Secretary for 20 years.  Trish states, “I would call myself a true “KEOKUKIAN”.   I am proud to be a part of the Chamber.  I feel it plays such an important role in Keokuk.  The Chamber is a great way to promote our business and integrity in a fun and professional manner”

bio coming soon

Todd Courtois

Todd Courtois

Tricia Merydith

Tricia Merydith

Taske Force

Diane Fader

Diane Fader

Doug Ewing

Doug Ewing

Kari Bevans

Kari Bevans

Michael Greenwald

Michael Greenwald

Radio Keokuk