Alumni Spotlight

Brad Hall

By: Whitney E. Copley
July 18, 2012

Brad Hall’s name is synonymous with economic development in Southeastern Kentucky. In 2007, he became the President/CEO of the Pike County Chamber of Commerce, and under his leadership the Chamber experienced tremendous growth. In 2011, four years into Hall’s tenure, the Chamber expanded, servicing a total of eight counties. Consequently, the organization changed its name to reflect its larger service area. Hall continued to lead the Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce for the next year. During his five-year tenure, both Chamber membership and volunteerism doubled. At 552 members, the Chamber clearly has, as its motto indicates, “the power to be heard.” The Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce earned seven state and national awards under Hall’s direction. In 2008, the Chamber Executive of the Year Award was bestowed upon Hall by the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce Executives, the state professional society for chamber professionals. Hall earned the Accredited Chamber Executive certification from the society in 2011. He also completed the Institute of Non-Profit Management program at the University of Georgia through the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

With such accomplishments, it was only a matter of time before business leaders envisioned Hall enacting change within their own organizations. On June 1, 2012, the Chamber announced that Hall would resign as the President/CEO in order to share his talents with energy leader American Electric Power (AEP)-Kentucky Power as Manager of External Affairs.

“The move was about having impact,” Hall said when asked about his decision to leave the Chamber. Rather than working with eight counties, Hall will facilitate economic development and manage community affairs for the 20 counties in AEP-Kentucky Power’s eastern Kentucky service area. “The number one focus in this job is economic development. The skillsets I have will be utilized with the great amount of resources Kentucky Power has to bring additional jobs to the region.” Hall explained that the leverage AEP has with its client base across 11 states will encourage companies wishing to expand to locate into the Kentucky market.

In his new role, Hall reports directly to the CEO of AEP-Kentucky Power, allowing for more focus. While chamber work is very task oriented, Hall said that focus is strained because a small staff is stretched thin, reporting to 24 board members. “When you can focus, you can hone your skills better and have impact in a certain area.” Hall will continue to work closely with the Chamber representing AEP-Kentucky Power as he serves a three-year term as a member of both the Board of Directors and Executive Committee.

Hall explained that his experience as a student at the University of Pikeville directly impacted his career path. His involvement in student government and a business club that included various state and national competitions showcased Hall’s dedication to academics and extracurricular activities, which in turn helped him to secure a job at Eastern Telephone, a locally owned and operated telecommunications company, during his junior year. Working at a small company, Hall had various responsibilities, from handling sales to managing the pager department. Hall recalled, “In that small atmosphere, everyone did everything.” He enjoyed seeing theories learned in the classroom become realities in his work at Eastern Telephone. “Application and theory are two different worlds. It was an invaluable experience.”

Hall is a 1996 graduate of the University of Pikeville and earned his master’s degree in business administration from Morehead State University in 2000. He is married to Laura Ford Hall who is also a UPIKE graduate. The couple resides in Pikeville where they are active members of the community.

 

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