The Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce board of directors named President Brandom Gengelbach chief executive officer.
Gengelbach succeeds Bill Thornton, who recently retired. Thornton had been in the CEO/president role since 2000 after serving in economic development since 1989. Gengelbach joined the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce as executive vice president of economic development in November of 2016.
“Brandom’s 18 years of experience with numerous chambers and the strong community relationships he has built with the Fort Worth community have prepared him to take on this role. We are excited to begin working together and for the future of the chamber,” said Martin Noto, chairman of the chamber board and executive vice president and chief lending officer of Inwood National Bank. “His leadership has been invaluable to our members during the pandemic. He and staff have worked hard in providing resources and guidance along with reassurance that Fort Worth will persevere.”
“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead the chamber and work alongside Fort Worth business leaders and the Fort Worth community at this pivotal time in our region,” Gengelbach said. “I am equally humbled and energized to lead the chamber into a new phase of transformation and growth.”
Before coming to Fort Worth, Gengelbach served as president of the public-private Maury County Chamber and Economic Alliance. He re-energized the Columbia, Tenn.-based organization, doubling membership while leading a three-year effort that brought 2,300 jobs to the county, $158 million in capital investment and a reduction in unemployment from 14% to less than 8%.
Gengelbach’s career included work in organizational development and corporate partnerships for the Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce and economic development for the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. Previously, he served Brisbane Marketing, the official marketing authority for the Greater Brisbane, Australia, region.
Gengelbach grew up in Houston and the Plano-Addison area. He holds an MBA from the University of Southampton, near London, where he was a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar. He received a bachelor of arts degree in journalism from Samford University in Birmingham, Ala.