WAHOO – Soon after coming to Wahoo in 2013 to take a position at Edward Jones, Josh Krueger joined the Wahoo Chamber of Commerce as a way to get to know people.
Since then, his role in the Chamber has grown, to becoming a board member, the vice president and now president.
Krueger recently succeeded Ryan Ideus as president of the organization, which is made up of local businesses and individuals.
Being involved in the Chamber helped Krueger form relationships and friendships with people who weren’t his clients.
“It was just another activity for me to get to know people,” he said.
As president, Krueger hopes to continue the work prior Chamber presidents have done to promote economic growth in Wahoo.
“The intent is to build the Wahoo business environment, make it a good place to grow a business, sustain a business and do the best we can to support folks,” he said.
An organization like the Chamber is always vital, but during the current COVID-19 pandemic, it is even more important to provide marketing and other types of support to businesses that are struggling to survive. The Chamber has been actively coming up with ideas to promote the local businesses, including Friday’s “Rona Rally,” the daily “Rally Wahoo” promotions that highlight individual businesses, and the creation of the “Small Town Stimulus” hashtag that has taken off.
“It’s in times like this I like to think we’re adding value to our membership,” he said.
As president, Krueger will work in conjunction with Theresa Klein, who is executive director of the Chamber and economic development for Wahoo. He also serves on the board of directors of the Greater Wahoo Development Foundation, of which Klein is a member.
Wahoo’s local school systems, recreational opportunities and public facilities are what attracted Krueger and many others to the community. He grew up in the northeast Nebraska community of Pierce. His wife, Sarah, came from a small town in southeast Nebraska, and they both realized they wanted to live in a place like Wahoo, with its rural roots and proximity to the state’s metropolitan areas.
When he learned of an open position in Wahoo at Edward Jones, the Krueger family jumped at the chance to become a part of the community. He has served on the library foundation and coached his elementary-aged children in baseball and football.
“It’s a great community,” he said. “I’ve loved the friends I’ve made, the business relationships I’ve made and the clients I’ve helped. It’s been incredibly rewarding.”