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Nicole McGrew becomes first Black woman to chair Alexandria’s chamber of commerce

The new chair of the Chamber ALX says that she will focus on supporting local businesses and making the organization more resourceful.

Nicole McGrew, owner of Threadleaf & Company, celebrated officially taking over as chair during a chamber event Thursday night held in the visitor’s center of George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate. Her term officially began Jan. 1.

She is the first Black woman to chair the chamber and succeeded former Chair Angela Hartley.

“When I joined the chamber in 2018, I never imagined I’d be here as chamber board chair,” McGres told event attendees Thursday. “As a chamber, we are here to support and advocate for our businesses, large and small, for-profit or nonprofit, everything from parking to procurement. You have a question and we’re here to help you do it.”

McGrew opened Threadleaf in 2018 after an impressive decade-long legal career. She has a history from the University of Chicago, a master’s degree in political science and government from Hofstra University and a law degree from  Georgetown University Law Center. For five years she was assistant general counsel for the Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs, and she was the deputy general counsel for the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy during the final year of the Obama administration.

Threadleaf & Company closed its brick-and-mortar location at 102 N. Fayette Street last year, eventually closed its online shop and transitioned to personal consultations. In a Dec. 23 Instagram post, McGrew said that she is transitioning away from her business.

“Businesses do not exist in a vacuum,” McGrew told the audience. “How do we create and maintain sustainable businesses and livable communities that will last for our children and our children’s children? These are my priorities this year — growing business, engaging community and promoting a culture of sustainability so that in another 300 years, Alexandria will still be the best city on the Potomac.”

Scott Reamy, a manager at Dominion Energy and a Chamber board member, told attendees “we’re in good hands for the next year.”

“There is not a more genuine person here tonight to lead the chamber in our efforts moving forward,” Reamy said.

The event was attended by six members of City Council as well as many local business owners and other members.

Via Chamber ALX/Facebook

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