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Amy Rudisill is excited about her new job as public information officer with Randolph County.    Larry Penkava/Randolph Hub

New job, same goal: Work with community

ASHEBORO — After 29 years, Amy Rudisill seemed to be the face of the Asheboro/Randolph Chamber of Commerce. But on April 15, she moved from 137 S. Fayetteville St. to 725 McDowell Road, taking over the position of Randolph County public information officer.


“Personally, there are times you have to think, ‘Is this the time to step into a new light, to turn the page?’ ” she said on April 25 from a meeting room in the Randolph County Office Building. 


During a time of transition at the Chamber, with Linda Brown leaving her president’s position and other staff members moving on, Rudisill found the job with the county intriguing. The public information officer position was open when Chelsey Butler left to take a similar job with Toyota Battery near Liberty. Interestingly, Butler had worked at the Chamber before taking the new PIO job when it was created by Randolph County in 2021.


“Other counties have public information officers,” said Rudisill, noting Randolph County saw the need to have someone overseeing communications with the media and the public. The PIO also uses social media, writes and sends out press releases and statements, and works with the county commissioners to educate the community on what’s happening in the local government.


“Chelsey started it, then moved on to Toyota,” Rudisill said. “She paved the way, started things to move forward.” Part of that is the Randolph Recap section on the Randolph County website, which summarizes what happens at various public meetings to let citizens know about government projects. 


The PIO also works with county departments to find out and market their needs, Rudisill said. That includes getting the word out about coming events, such as the Child Abuse Prevention Walk last week.


“I’m getting there,” she said. “It’s only my second week. I have worked on some projects. I feel like it’ll take a couple of months. I’ll be meeting with all the department heads. There’s a lot going on, with budget time. I’m hoping that in the next six months I’ll have my feet wet.”


Rudisill said she’s found “everyone welcoming and helpful” since she came on board. “I hope to help the county with citizens, to educate the community.”


After graduating from Randleman High School and earning an associates degree in microcomputer systems technology from Randolph Community College, Rudisill was hired by George Gusler in 1995 as an administrative assistant at the Chamber of Commerce. Over the years, she worked her way up to office manager, membership and events director and finally vice president of membership and events.


Meanwhile, she married Alan Rudisill, who now works in the county’s maintenance department. The couple have a 19-year-old son, Jacob, and a daughter, Bethany, who is 11.


Rudisill said being so young at the beginning of her time with the Chamber, she had plenty to learn. But she found the environment conducive to assimilation and Gusler a good boss who looked out for his staff.


With the membership of the Chamber so diverse, Rudisill said, it was like “putting parts of a puzzle together to create our vision. I saw how important community development is. It takes all of us working together. It helped me focus in on that, to be able to make the community a better place. That’s priceless.”


One of the programs the Chamber created while she was there was Student LIFT, or Leadership Information For Tomorrow. Rudisill said the idea “was created out of a planning retreat discussion. Local leaders discuss issues and trends, anything we could address. We came up with the idea for the program. It’s been life-changing.”


The Chamber works with the local school systems on the teacher internship program when certain teachers are immersed in local businesses and industries. When they get back to the classroom, they can connect their students with real-world jobs.


“One year, one of the teachers was burned out,” Rudisill said. “The program changed her life. She told me she had forgotten why she did what she did.”


The Chamber of Commerce partners with the Randolph County Economic Development Corporation, the Tourism Development Authority, the City of Asheboro, Randolph County and other municipalities in the county. All those entities combine business, economic development, tourism and travel, and education. “That’s what it takes to make the community better,” she said.


Going back to her decision to change jobs, Rudisill said she looked at the projected unprecedented growth in the county with the coming of Toyota Battery and Wolfspeed. 


“I can help with messaging with citizens and also with other communities,” she said. “There will be opportunities to recruit people from outside the county (for available jobs).


“It’s an honor for me to work for the community, to serve in a different aspect, however I can do that.”