City approves two positions for events center

Jeremy Nash

In the final Lenoir City Council meeting at city hall on Broadway Street, members unanimously approved two part-time positions to help new Events Center Director Allison Sousa.

Stephanie Nelson will be events center assistant, while Megan Bright assumes the role of office assistant.

About 12 resumes were received during the application process for one full-time position, which was split into two part-time roles, Sousa said. The positions could become full time in the future if necessary, she said.

“For the event assistant is her vast event experience, including the fact that she owned her own event planning business,” Sousa said of what made Nelson right for the job. “She’s familiar working the markets that we’ll be working. She’s a problem-solver, she’s very creative with solutions and very, very organized, and so we’ll work well off each other.
“As far as Megan’s concerned, the biggest thing for Megan, in all honesty, was her passion for the area and her willingness to learn,” Sousa said. “She really wants to learn the event side of things even though she’s being brought on as the administrative person. She’s got outstanding computer skills, which we will definitely need, and we need people who can pick up this new event software very quickly. Some people are very intimidated by new software and I got the distinct impression that neither one of these gals will be intimidated by it.”
Council approved the purchase of event management software. Sousa said the initial quote for EventPro Software was $11,225, but she was able to get it down to $9,995.
Nelson will begin next week to help with advanced marketing for contracts and vendor partnerships, and Bright will start about two weeks prior to the center opening in November.
Lenoir City Mayor Tony Aikens said he was confident Nelson and Bright would help Sousa make the center successful.
“Obviously, one person — and we’ve always known this — one person couldn’t do it all if we want it to be successful, and we think it will be successful so we’ve got to do our part,” Aikens said. “So we hired two part-time people. Obviously, no benefits involved and it costs less money to get them in there, but certainly it appears like by the applications that I’ve seen and by briefly talking to Allison about it, it appears like they’re certainly qualified, and so we’re excited to have them on board to help her out. Hopefully we’ll make that a very successful operation.”
In other news, Lenoir City Council:
• Passed the second and final reading of rezoning property at 121 Doyle St., from R-1-S Single Family Residential District to R-2 Medium Density Residential District.
Approved the second and final reading to establish a three-way stop at the intersection of West Glenview Drive and Gray Leaf Lane.
Approved the first reading to vacate a right-of-way portion of unimproved K Street and associated alleyway between West 8th Avenue and West 9th Avenue and return the underlying property to the adjoining property owner Anna Jean Thompson.
Considered and passed the selection of Community Development Partners as consultant for the HOME Grant.
Authorized closure of Kingston Street to A Street 5-8 p.m. Nov. 5 for “Art in the City for Kiddies.”
Passed the purchasing committee’s recommendations on curbing, restroom materials and brick for Central Park.
Renewed dental and vision coverage with Healthsmart Benefit Solutions.
Placed Vonnie Myers on the city planning commission. Myers replaces Herb Linginfelter, who recently stepped down.