Sarah McInnis is the new face welcoming new businesses and supporting established ones in her recently adopted role as the Director of the Humboldt and District Chamber of Commerce. Sarah steps into the position following the retirement of Brent Fitzpatrick. It’s been a busy start of the year for McInnis as she deftly navigates the challenges of growth and expansion while meeting members and adapting to her new locale. 

Originally from Saskatchewan, McInnis and her husband spent many years in Prince Edward Island where she worked in community engagement with the Legislative Assembly. She confesses here was a little culture shock for her husband, a newcomer to the prairies and its occasional bone-rattling cold, but they’ve embraced the community and have dived into all that Humboldt and area has to offer. 

“I am new to Humboldt, but I love the city, and I’m very passionate about bringing our community together and giving back,” McInnis said. “I’m excited to see where that takes me in my new role.” 

Sarah has hit the ground running, travelling throughout the community and region for meet and greets and getting a feel for the terrain of a rural region with a tremendous resource base and talented businesses and industries who have worked hard to maximize those resources. 

“I think we are incredibly lucky here in Humboldt. We have such a diverse variety of businesses in a relatively small metropolitan area. I think we’re incredibly lucky to have all the businesses and services that we do. It’s quite amazing frankly.” 

McInnis arrives at a time when the potential for growth has increased with the BHP Jansen Stage 2 project announcement serving as a catalyst. She knows the opportunities that exist and sees the role that the Chamber needs to play. Along with it come the challenges.  

“That’s top of mind here at the Chamber with our labour force and things like housing. We are going to have an influx of individuals. Lots of business struggles to find that labour force. So, as we see expansion from other businesses, we will have quite the challenge ahead.” 

The McInnis family has already put its shoulder to the wheel in terms of volunteerism, helping with fundraising efforts for the Bill Brecht Play Park Project. As well as a strong commitment the business community, she sees the Chamber expanding its reach into the community, along with its businesses who donate countless dollars in merchandise and countless hours in volunteering to support Humboldt and area charities. That all may come with some new directions the Board is examining. 

“I think the Chamber can be even more involved in the community in a number of ways. I think what’s really exciting right now at the Chamber of Commerce is that our Board of Directors is undergoing a new strategic plan. With that is going to come new direction and new avenues in that regrowth stage – I think there will be plenty of opportunity to partner with the community going forward.” 

McInnis says that strategic planning is in its early stages. At the heart of the planning is continued support and advocacy for the Chamber’s business members, along with a continued emphasis on communication and expansion.  

“It’s been a wild and chaotic first couple of weeks, but I’m loving it so far,” McInnis affirms. “Humboldt is a great and bustling city and I’m excited to dig in and get going.”