• Board & Staff

    The Carbondale Chamber of Commerce is led by a 15-member Board of Directors as well as professional staff members. A majority of board members are elected to three-year terms by the general membership. The board meets monthly and directs the activities of the organization according to the Chamber's Bylaws which are available for download here.

  • Elected Members:

  • Shane Carsrud Shane Carsrud

    2018 Chairman

    Shane is a Commercial Officer at Banterra Bank. He is a graduate of Carbondale Community High School, holds a bachelor’s of economics from Southern Illinois University, and a master’s in Business Administration from Webster University.

    Shane is a member of the Rotary Club of Carbondale-Breakfast, finance chair of Our Savior Lutheran in Carbondale, treasurer of Carbondale Tourism, and a member of Carbondale’s Community Development and Loan Grant Board. He has been involved with several other community organization and is a 2011 graduate of Leadership Carbondale.

    Shane and his wife Jessica reside in Carterville with their two children.   

  • Jolene Falat Jolene Falat


    Jolene Falat is the Assistant Vice-President & Branch Manager of First Mid-Illinois Bank and Trust in Carbondale.

    She has served as the treasurer of the board of the Science Center of Southern Illinois and is chairperson of the “Chef Clash in the Arena” (formerly “100 Men Who Cook”) annual fundraising event that benefits several local charities.

    Jolene attended the University of Illinois and completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management from Mid-Continent University. She and her husband Steve live in Murphysboro and have three grown children, all who have graduated from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and three grandchildren.

  • Jeremy Clow Jeremy Clow

    Jeremy Clow is the founder and CEO of Saluki Craft Co. A native of Effingham, he holds two degrees in architecture from Southern Illinois University.

    He strives for partnerships with fellow businesses and promotes all economic development in Carbondale, especially the downtown. He is a block captain for Carbondale Main Street and served for two years on the Downtown Advisory Committee.

    Proud to be a Saluki, he continues to support various programs at SIU: sponsoring “Start Seeing Pink” at the Student Center, Sunset Concerts, various design-affiliated student organizations and the Touch of Nature Environmental Center. 

  • Christopher Swims Christopher Swims

    Pastor Christopher Swims has served as senior pastor of Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church since 2010.  In additional to his role with the Chamber, he is active in a number of civic, professional and religious organizations.

    Christopher holds a bachelor's degree in interpersonal communication from Southern Illinois University. He lives in Carbondale with his wife Brittany and daughter Carrington.

  • Jim Jacobs Jim Jacobs


    Jim is the owner of Jacobs Air Conditioning and Heating. A veteran of the U.S. Navy, Jim and his family relocated to Carbondale from South Florida in 1993.

    Jim serves on the Chamber’s Ambassadors Committee and also is a member of the Better Business Bureau, the Air Conditioning Contractors of America and the Building Performance Institute.

    Jim and his wife Deann live in rural Carbondale and have five children.

  • Marcia Sinnott Marcia Sinnott

    Marcia Beth Sinnott is a realtor at Five Star Realty. She previously was an elementary teacher for Carbondale Elementary, where she served two terms as president of the Carbondale Education Association. Marcia earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree from Southern Illinois University.

    Marcia has served on a variety of committee chairmanships with the Egyptian Board of Realtors and Illinois Association of Realtors. She was awarded Egyptian Board of Realtors - Realtor Associate of the Year in 1983. Marcia also is the charter president of Friends of the Carbondale Public Library. She is also a charter member of the Rotary Club of Carbondale-Breakfast.

    She is a member of the Ambassador Committee and received the Chamber Service Award in 2015. 

  • Ted Gutierrez Ted Gutierrez

    Ted J Gutierrez is currently working in The Office of Economic and Regional Development with Southern Illinois University. Previously, he has worked with the Jackson County Mass Transit District and the Small Business Development Center at Southern Illinois University and worked in mortgage and retail banking. He earned his MBA from the University of Redlands (San Diego Campus) and his undergraduate degree from the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque.

    Ted serves on the Human Relations Commission in Carbondale, is a board member of United Way of Southern Illinois. He lives in Carbondale with his wife Jennifer, three dogs and a cat and his son Reese graduated from CCHS in 2016.

    Ted was appointed by Past Chairman Darren Berger to fill a vacancy on the Baord of Directors.

  • Diane Hood Diane Hood

    Diane Hood is the manager of The Furniture King in Carbondale. She and her husband, Estus, have been Southern Illinois residents for 30 years. Diane serves on the board of directors for the Women’s Center, the Boys and Girls Club of Carbondale, the Carbondale Community High School Foundation, the SIH Foundation and the NAACP. She is active in Toys for Tots and was named the 2016 Carbondale Citizen of the Year.

  • Darren Berger Darren Berger

    Past Chairman

    A native of the community, Darren Berger attended Carbondale Community High School and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. He works as a business development specialist for The Bank of Carbondale.  He was elected to the Carbondale Chamber Board of Directors in December 2013.

    Darren is a member of the Chamber’s Saluki Pride Committee, the Chamber's Economic Development Committee and chairs the Membership Committee. He was the recipient of the Chamber Service Award in 2014.

    Darren also volunteers as a member of the board for the Carbondale Boys and Girls Club and for other civic and charitable causes throughout the region.

  • Justin Zurlinden Justin Zurlinden

    Justin is a Realtor with Realty Central  in Carbondale. A graduate of the School of Architecture at Southern Illinois University, he lives in the Tatum Heights neighborhood in Carbondale with his wife, Emily, and their son Oliver.

    After graduating from SIU in 2011, Justin opened Vintage Soul Furniture, a furniture resale shop that funded a local non-profit organization working with homeless people and underprivileged children.  After three years of running his business, he transitioned from selling couches to houses. He currently specializes in first-time homebuyer programs, estates, and senior relocation.

    Justin is also a member of the Preservation Commission for the City of Carbondale, which serves to protect architectural gems in Carbondale and empower people to restore and memorialize important places, people, and events in our community.

  • Tena Bennett Tena Bennett

    Tena Bennett is the Director of the Student Center at Southern Illinois University where she oversees the facility and dining operations as well as a variety of programming efforts.

    A resident of Carterville, she has lived in the community for 11 years and worked at SIU in various roles within Student Affairs. Tena currently is a member of the Chamber’s Ambassadors Committee and is pursuing her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration at SIU.

  • Melissa Lewis Melissa Lewis

    Melissa works as director of external sales for Walker's Bluff, an area winery, restaurant, event center and destination. She and her husband, Jarred Lewis, reside in Carterville and have five children together ranging in age from twin 5-year-olds to the sixth grade. 

    Melissa is a graduate of  Illinois Benedictine University and she earned a branch manager’s certification from the Illinois Bankers Association in 2007.

    In addition to serving as president, Melissa is a member of the Chamber’s Ambassadors Committee, serves on the organization's Membership Committee and was the 206 chair of the organization’s Board of Directors.

  • Appointed Members:

  • Mike Henry Mike Henry

    City of Carbondale

    Mike Henry is the owner of Henry Printing and is currently in his first term as mayor of the City of Carbondale.

    Mike is married to Terri Walters Henry, an area real estate agent. He has three sons and two daughters, with eight grandchildren. He graduated from Southern Illinois University with a bachelor’s degree in engineering.  While a student at SIU, he opened a typing and copying business in 1972. That business has grown into what is now Henry Printing. 

    He serves as the City of Carbondale's representative on the Board of Directors. 

    He served as Board Chairman for the Chamber in 1984.

  • Chamber Staff:

  • Jennifer Olson Jennifer Olson

    President / CEO

    Jennifer is serving as President / CEO of Carbondale Chamber of Commerce. She is a graduate of the 2006 Leadership Carbondale program and a former member of the Ambassadors Committee. Fifteen years of her career were spent in Commercial Lending, ten of those were with Old National Bank. Prior to banking, Jennifer served as Marketing Director at University Mall.  

    Jennifer is a graduate of McKendree University. She is also a graduate of the Delta Leadership Institute, and currently serves the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) as one of two Illinois Representatives to the Regional Advisory Council. She recently attended Authentic Leadership Training at the Harvard Kennedy School, which was a program of the DRA.  She also serves as a Board Member for Voices for Illinois Children. Jennifer has worked on many local fundraising events 

    Jennifer is a southern Illinois native, she and her husband Brad have two daughters. Jennifer and her husband own The Lookout at the Lake, a vacation rental at Lake of Egypt.

  • LeAnne Gaydos LeAnne Gaydos

    Office Manager

    LeAnne joined the Chamber staff in August 2017, following a successful career in retail advertising and customer service.  She attended Kansas State University and she is a Certified Nursing Assistant.

     LeAnne lives with her family in De Soto. She is active in her church and several charitable causes.

    Email LeAnne here.   

  • Emily Buice Emily Buice

    Member Events and Communication

    Emily is a senior at Southern Illinois University majoring in Public Relations and History. Originally from Tallassee, Ala., Emily is a member of Alpha Gamma Delta, Saluki Ambassadors and currently serves as the student member of the Illinois Board of Higher Education.

  • Emily Kuehl Emily Kuehl

    Graphic Designer

    Emily is a senior at Southern Illinois University majoring in Communication Design and minoring in Marketing. She is originally from Morrison, Illinois. She is responsible for print and digital design for all Chamber programs and events.

    Emily is Vice President of the AIGA chapter at SIU, a member of NSCS, and also works as a Graphic Designer and Productions in the SIU Student Center.