The Sun Prairie Chamber of Commerce recently announced Barbara Behling has joined the organization effective Aug. 30, 2021.
Behling has held leadership positions in both growing private-sector businesses as well as non-profit experience. As the Outreach and Events Coordinator, Behling will be instrumental in supporting local businesses, leading the membership drive, and supporting special events and will assist with the ‘modernizing’ of the organization.
“I’m honored to join the chamber as it combines my education, non-profit experience and the knowledge gained while growing businesses. Skills learned will support our mission to promote, connect and advocate for chamber members and the Sun Prairie community,” shared Behling.
Behling spent 12 years with Culver Franchising Systems, Inc. the parent company of Culver’s restaurants, during a time of tremendous growth. She was the first marketing hire for the company and led marketing, public relations, risk management and corporate social responsibility programs for the chain, while growing from 17 to more than 400 restaurants in 16 states.
She then began a tenure with the American Red Cross as the Development and Communications Officer for Northeast Wisconsin. This role transitioned into a statewide role leading communications efforts via traditional media to social media platforms.
With more than 700 disasters in Wisconsin annually (most were residential fires) she was also deployed nationally serving in the Disaster Operations Center in Washington DC to being on the ground for some of America’s most tragic incidents such as Superstorm Sandy, the Boston Marathon explosion, Sikh temple and Pulse Night Club shootings.
“After the first dozen hurricanes, I lost count of the deployments; however, I’ve never forgotten the best of humanity which rises to occasion when disasters strike,” Behling said. “Plus, working with volunteers from around the country to provide comfort and aid to those who lost everything always amazed me.”
Most recently, Behling completed a special project for Quarra Stone — a business moving their headquarters to Sun Prairie — for the Obama Presidential Center which will be built on the south side of Chicago.
“While most of the research and outreach is still classified,” Behling said, “I’m honored to have been a part of a historical building.
Behling has a Hospitality and Tourism degree from UW-Stout and a Emergency Management certificate from UW Green Bay.
She volunteers for the Shelter from the Storm Ministries, Habitat for Humanity, the American Red Cross and the Good Guys & Gals Club.
Behling and her family have resided in Sun Prairie for the past 11 years.
The Sun Prairie Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit business membership association with 368 members representing more than 10,000 employees. It is a volunteer driven organization with a 12-member board of directors representing Sun Prairie businesses, civic organizations, non-profits and and other organizations. To learn more about the chamber, visit www.sunprairiechamber.com., or visit their offices at 109 E. Main Street, Sun Prairie.