Jill Lamkin has been named the new executive director for Manhattan Beach Downtown Business and Professional Association it was announced Thursday, March 21, 2019.
Lamkin steps into the role of representing downtown businesses after former executive director Kelly Stroman became president and CEO for the Manhattan Beach Chamber of Commerce in January.
In addition to marketing and community relations for the nearly 300 downtown businesses, Lamkin will manage the Tuesday Farmers Markets on Morningside Drive next to the Shade Hotel.
"As a former owner of a downtown children’s boutique, Sprout, and a past board member of the DBPA, Jill is uniquely aware of the challenges businesses face in downtown Manhattan Beach," said DBPA board president Linda McLoughlin Figel, in a statement.
Lamkin brings more than a decade of experience in volunteer leadership roles within Manhattan Beach elementary, middle and high schools, as well as a term on the board of the Manhattan Beach Education Foundation.
"I realize the significance of a cohesive and cooperative working relationship between the city, our neighbors, landlords and the DBPA,” said Lamkin in the statement.
It was during Lamkin's tenure as a DBPA board member that the Farmers Market concept was born.
“I will never forget the meeting where Maureen McBride, of Tabula Rasa Essentials, presented the idea of bringing a farmer’s market to downtown Manhattan Beach," said Lamkin. "It was one of those ‘aha!’ moments that forever changed the landscape of our community.”
With proceeds from the Farmers’ Market, the DBPA supports local organizations including: Grades of Green, Growing Great, The Roundhouse Aquarium and the Manhattan Beach Education Foundation.
“These are perfect examples of our downtown businesses putting dollars behind programs that strengthen the backbone of our community,” said Lamkin, adding that support from Farmer's Market shoppers enabled the DBPA to donate more than $20,000 to local organizations last year.
"I can’t imagine a more rewarding experience than visiting our beautiful Farmer’s Market and enjoying certified organic produce, unique foods and flowers, knowing that every penny of the proceeds goes to benefit our community,” said Lamkin.