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Lindsey Innes has always been a high achiever.

A hard worker, she has always taken advantage of the opportunities given to her.

And from a young age Innes stood out.

At just four-years-old she competed in her first rodeo. By the age 13 she was competing at a professional level after filling out her pro rodeo permit on her first run – a feat that normally takes horse and rider several races to accomplish. Innes did not disappoint – winning the Abbotsford Pro Rodeo while competing as a professional for the first time.

While barrel racing and horseback riding is a huge part of Innes’ life, she’s most recognized for her work in Campbell River’s business community.

Innes, 26, has worked her way up to the events and member services manager for the Campbell River and District Chamber of Commerce. She has a large portfolio of responsibilities which include promoting the chamber, writing newsletters and media releases, recruiting members, hosting and coordinating business events, and meeting with members and ensuring their needs are being met.

Innes has come a long way since 2011 when she first started with the Chamber of Commerce as a summer student.

“It was only meant to be a three-month position, but it ended up being a great fit and I was able to carry on working at the chamber part-time for two years while I completed my degree,” Innes says. “Since then, my position with the chamber has evolved.”

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After completing her four-year Bachelor of Business Administration degree at North Island College in 2013, Innes was hired on at the chamber as a full-time employee. As a lifelong Campbell River resident, and a 2006 graduate of Timberline Secondary School, Innes is thrilled to be able to work in her hometown.

“I really enjoy being outdoors and Campbell River has so much to offer in that respect, I think there is something for everyone here,” says Innes whose mother and grandmother were also born and raised here. “Not only is the scenery beautiful, there is a real sense of community pride. Working at the Chamber, I am able to see firsthand how supportive the people and businesses in Campbell River really are and how much they give back to the community.”

And working with the chamber provides Innes with a front row seat. She’s on the front lines, meeting with business owners and unearthing their goals and values.

“A lot of my time is spent meeting with members to learn about their business and their interests and how the chamber can support them,” Innes says. “We have around 480 members right now and our membership is growing. The chamber continuously works to create and maintain a positive business climate in Campbell River by developing business-building initiatives that focus on the needs of our members and community, all of which is made possible by the support of our members. I’m always interested in meeting with businesses in the community to learn more about them and to uncover ways that the chamber can help them.”

But while her day job keeps her busy, Innes still also finds time for biking and hiking with her fiancé and two golden retrievers, Beans and Wiggles, and, of course, her first love – barrel racing. Innes owns two horses, Ruby, 3, and Thirsty, 9, who is just working her way up the barrel racing ropes.

Innes is preparing to enter Thirsty in her first rodeo this summer. She’s coming off stellar performances at barrel races in Pasco, Washington, Williams Lake and Salmon Arm where Innes and Thirsty had the best average over two runs in a field of 140 other riders.

Innes credits her parents for her love of horses, who also compete and own a ranch in Oyster River where they host sanctioned Barrel Racing events.

“I was on the back of a horse before I was walking – it’s always been a part of my life,” Innes says. “I love to ride and compete. I put so much time and heart into riding and to see that pay off in competition is extremely rewarding, but it’s my love for horses that keeps me going.”

So does the payoff at work.

“I always feel a sense of accomplishment when I can help someone to achieve their business goals by utilizing the resources and supports that are available through the Chamber,” Innes says.

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