On August 21, the Amherst Business Improvement District announced that Gabrielle Gould would become the organization’s new executive director. Beginning August 26, Gould replaced Sarah la Cour, who led the organization for six years.
BID is a nonprofit economic development organization dedicated to improving Amherst’s downtown area through events, marketing and a variety of projects. BID also provides programs and services to Amherst residents and businesses.
“I have enjoyed my time at the BID immensely and look forward to seeing the organization progress based on the strong foundation we have created … it feels like a good time for me to pursue other personal and professional goals,” la Cour told MassLive reporter Jim Russell.
La Cour is currently the Grant Administrator and Clerk of the Works at Westmass Area Development Corporation in Chicopee, MA.
After two-months of searching for la Cour’s replacement, BID’s board president Barry Roberts seems optimistic about Gould’s future with the organization.
“We are very happy to have Gabrielle join the BID as the new executive director…We were drawn to her varied and successful work experience and especially her enthusiasm and ‘can-do’ spirit,” Roberts said in a statement.
Previously, Gould worked as a business owner of Alas Nantucket, the executive director of Nantucket music, and as a project manager at the Financial Development Agency.
“I’m absolutely thrilled to join the BID,” Gould said in the same statement. “I look forward to working with our current and future businesses, townhall, and our entire community to continue to make Amherst a beautiful year-round home and destination for families, tourists, parents and students alike.”
In January 2019, Gould moved from Nantucket to Amherst and has since worked on the events committee for the Jones Library’s Samuel Minot Jones Awards, as well as the Amherst Regional Middle School Parent Guardian Organization.
Recently, Gould told the Daily Hampshire Gazette that she is meeting with local business owners and community members in order to familiarize herself with the area. In addition, Gould is preparing for the annual Celebrate Amherst block party which is scheduled for September 19 from 5 to 9 p.m.
Gould said that she and her family were first drawn to Amherst after experiencing the diversity and the beauty of the area at last year’s block party.
“I’m absolutely in love with downtown Amherst, said Gould. “There’s such a great history here. It’s very diverse. There’s an eclectic business mix and a wonderful contrast and complement between the architecture and natural beauty.”
“It’s this energy that will help us build on our previous successes and sell our great downtown,” Roberts said.
Meghan Sorensen is a Collegian correspondent can be reached at [email protected]