BERLIN – An accomplished tourism and economic development professional from Sykesville has been selected to replace Michael Day as Berlin’s director of economic development.
Town officials announced that Ivy Wells, currently the director of economic development in Sykesville, has been selected to take over the position being vacated by Day, who is retiring.
“We’re obviously all delighted with how much Michael Day got done but the job is not done,” Mayor Gee Williams said. “There’s so much opportunity with Ivy’s experience and enthusiasm. As much as has been done there’s still a lot to do.”
Wells, who has served as economic development director and Main Street manager in Sykesville for the past six years, is expected to start in Berlin Nov. 24.
“I feel extremely privileged that I’m getting this opportunity,” Wells said. “I can’t wait to make Berlin my home.”
Wells, a graduate of the University of Maryland College Park, is also a certified Tourism Ambassador for the state and a board member for the Community Development Network of Maryland.
Day says that because of her work in Sykesville Wells already knows many of the state’s tourism and economic development officials, something that will help her get off to a smooth start in Berlin. Day will also be spending some time with Wells to get her started. She met several local officials during a visit to Octoberfest last weekend. She said she made a point to get to town early so she could see how staff set up for the event.
“It was like a well-oiled machine,” she said. “I can’t wait to be a part of it.”
Day expects Wells to be a good fit in Berlin.
“We wrote the job description as if they were looking for me,” he said, “and she fit it almost perfectly.”
Williams agreed. He said that although several qualified applicants had expressed interest in the position, Wells was the best of the bunch.
“When you’ve got someone that’s one of the best prospects in the state it’s tough competition for everybody,” he said.
Williams was impressed with Wells’ work in Sykesville, where she helped get a Main Street program off the ground just as Day had in Berlin.
“I’m impressed with her record of success in turning a little into a lot,” he said.
Berlin Councilmember Lisa Hall said she was excited to have Wells come to Berlin.
“I have been aware of the great strides she has made in developing the Main Street program as well as in economic development,” Hall said. “I look forward to working with Ivy and seeing her move economic development in Berlin to the next level.”