Say 'Hello' to the Team!
Director of Member Services, Steve Owens
Steve has had an interesting career prior to joining the Chamber. He previously worked in B2B marketing, communication and sales with Coffey Communications. He has been in Walla Walla for the last 15 years. Earlier in his career, Steve was a television sports producer with KOMO Television in Seattle.
Director of Special Events, Kelly Trop
Kelly Trop’s favorite things include pirates, Sangiovese, the Navy and Walla Walla. Having lived in the Outer Banks of North Carolina with family trips to Blackbeard’s stomping grounds, pirate festivals and events, hanging out with pirates (the nice ones) is second nature. Sangiovese is as fun to say as sip and is a favorite varietal (of many). Her husband is a Naval Academy graduate and Submarine service veteran – Go Navy! Kelly first fell in love with Walla Walla in 1998 when visiting her sister and brother in law.
After careers in Silicon Valley, her husband found a wonderful teaching position in College Place and Kelly joined the WWV Chamber team. Along with their loving dog and evil cat (a Bengal who insists on gifting Kelly with live snakes), they are blessed and excited to have made Walla Walla home.
Kelly has a B.S. degree in Business/Marketing from Central Washington University, a Viticulture & Enology certification, and brings years of event, communications and marketing experience. For the past 15 years, Kelly worked in the rapidly emerging data center industry with clients among the largest US companies, like Facebook, ebay, Google and Amazon. She founded two networking groups that serve the data center industry, including a group that helps women in the technology industry learn and make connections.
Manager/Marketing Operations, Marissa Miller
Marissa wears many hats at the Chamber, serving as both Manager/Marketing Operations and the Plan Center Coordinator. She spends most of her time managing the Chamber's day-to-day marketing and communication needs, as well as creating and maintaining new marketing campaigns and overseeing various projects within the organization. She also likes to dabble in graphic design.
A graduate of Walla Walla Community College, Marissa majored in Business, was active in Phi Beta Lambda and has an Associate in Applied Arts and Sciences Degree in Business and Management.
Born and raised in Eastern Oregon, Marissa relocated to Walla Walla to go back to school and fell in love with the beauty of the Walla Walla Valley. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, completing DIY projects around her home, fishing, hiking, Keeping Up with the Kardashians and spending time with her other half and their house full of rescue animals.
Office Manager, Tawnya Richards
I find my job in my very complex family: 53 foster children, 2 biological children (still at home, 1 in college and 1 a Junior in High School), 5 horses, 3 French Bulldogs, 1 Lab/Collie mix, 1 American Cream Draft horse, 3 miniature donkey’s, 10 rabbits (sometimes up to 100) and a Camel named Izzy the Camel, who joined the family when, while at a Horse expo in Boise, we ran across a Camel for sale. My husband Mickey said, “We don’t have a camel, it must be a sign.” This sort of thinking did not immediately appeal to my mildly OCD, logical, analytical side (after all, I do love being a bookkeeper), but all is well after 8 years later, Izzy is truly a LARGE part of our family and a big hit on the local celebrity appearance circuit from Oregon, Washington and Idaho. He has also appeared in 2 TV series.
Through all of this blessed chaos, I have learned that life does not always need to be planned and executed. Sometimes you have to lean back and enjoy the ride, as Mickey and I like to do on frequent weekend rides on our motorcycle…when we’re not travel to appearances with Izzy the Camel, having a litter of Frenchies, or feeding our small family varying from day to day..