Jun 22, 2022

MAC Director will step down

Posted Jun 22, 2022 10:11 PM
Craig Bender
Craig Bender

Craig Bender, Military Affairs Council Director for the Junction City Area Chamber of Commerce has submitted his resignation. His final function for that job will be to host the Veterans Ceremony for Sundown Salute on July 4th.

Bender plans to work for Grimmer Technologies Inc. in an Army Help Desk capacity for approximately 20 hours per week, which will pay him about the same as the MAC Director job.

Bender began working for the company back in January about 10 hours per week and asked Grimmer if they would want him for 20 hours each week. He then submitted a request to Chamber President Mickey Fornaro-Dean about possibly working Monday and Friday for Grimmer and Tuesday through Thursday for the Chamber. "I said I was pretty sure I could do 90% of the job, and I said I was willing to take a $25,000 pay cut to offset not being there in the office even though I was going to do the majority of the work. "

Bender explained that Fornaro-Dean took the request to the Chamber leadership. "And leadership decided that wasn't acceptable. It had to be five days a week and so they said it's either five days or nothing and so I submitted by letter of resignation.

JC Post talked with Chamber of Commerce Board Chairman Mark Claussen who said officials view the MAC Director job as a fulltime position. "We need somebody to work it in a fulltime capacity. He chose to make a decision upon that. We wish him the best. He's a great guy but we need someone working there fulltime."

Claussen confirmed that he was sure the Chamber would fill the position because it's a needed position. "It's very valuable to the community and the Chamber."

In his new job Bender will be working from his home in Milford. "I'll be doing some instructing and then doing and then teaching some other people, kind of like third tier help desk support."  

Bender has served as MAC Director for approximately three and a half years. During that time he worked on a military spouse reciprocity bill in the legislature to allow military spouses to immediately begin working in their professions. He supported a military impact aid bill that will provide more money for the school district, coordinated repair of the Riverwalk Trail, worked on a bill to help disabled veterans get money off of their property tax, helped host MAC breakfasts and worked on Grub and Grooves and a welcome home event for returning Soldiers from deployment.