SJC Chamber promotes Porter, appoints Everett


To meet its new advocacy and economic development goals, the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce recently promoted Bob Porter to director of public policy and appointed Karen Everett as economic development manager.

“Porter and Everett bring strong backgrounds to their new roles; I am excited to make this announcement and know that they will help us advance the goals of the Chamber,” said Isabelle Rodriguez, president and CEO of the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce.

Porter has brought the Chamber’s advocacy and public policy efforts beyond their previously targeted goals and has been a tremendous asset to the Chamber, according to Rodriguez. He has strengthened the Leadership St. Johns Program, reflected in the current class’ record number of participants (28).

Porter joined the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce in 2015 and previously served as executive director and CEO of Paws for Purple Hearts, an organization that trains and places service dogs with wounded warriors suffering from post-traumatic stress or traumatic brain injury during combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. He has spent most of his career working in Washington, D.C., and his experience includes work as a Congressional staffer, serving as the director of government relations for the law firm of Collier Shannon & Scott and serving as vice president at the international business consulting firm headed by former Secretary of Defense William Cohen.

Everett has a background in economic development and public relations and communications. She worked for the department of economic development for St. Mary’s County in Maryland as the county’s lead for business retention, expansion and recruitment. More recently, Everett was a senior account executive for Clockwork Marketing Services in Jacksonville, where she provided public relations services to multiple clients. She will work closely with the St. Johns County Economic Development Department. 

“I’m thrilled that Karen Everett is leading our economic development efforts,” Rodriguez said. “Everett’s experience in economic development, combined with her expertise in communications and public relations, are ideal to carry out the goals in our new three-year plan.”