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Rebecca Mormino to begin new role as executive director of Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership

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Photo courtesy of the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership. 

Rebecca Mormino poses for a picture.

Longtime Chapel Hill resident and UNC alumna Rebecca Mormino will be the new executive director of the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership, starting Aug. 14.

Mormino has lived in the area for almost 25 years and attended UNC's Kenan-Flagler Business School. She currently works as the assistant director of external affairs for UNC's Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise and has worked with local arts organizations like Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Hopscotch Music Festival and Merge Records — an independent record label based out of Durham.

“We think her leadership, her being an active community member and longtime resident of Chapel Hill and her previous employment with art organizations and managing sponsorships and programming really makes her a great fit,” Stephanie Cobert, the partnership's director of marketing, said. “She will bring all of this experience and hopefully, take us into the next phase of our partnership's identity.”

The duties of executive director include leading activities and strategy, as well as guiding the partnership to make sure it is meeting its overall mission, Cobert said.

“This person will basically be the main advocate for downtown businesses and spaces on Franklin, Rosemary and side streets,” Cobert said. “So she'll have big responsibilities representing the downtown district and the community, spearheading all marketing and outreach efforts, planning events and attending meetings with the town, the county and other organizations to help better downtown.”

During her time at Merge Records, Mormino helped plan the label’s 25th birthday festival, which took place in July 2014 in the parking lot of Cat’s Cradle.

“We had a big outdoor stage and large sponsors, and it was a much larger event than we normally do, which is inside the Cradle,” Merge Records Label Manager Christina Rentz said. “She helped us with all of that, with finding sponsors and bringing a lot of attention to this area and also to the record label for everything.”

Mormino served as the festival director for Merge Records.

“I think she really loves this area and has a lot of energy and great ideas,” Rentz said. “I'm excited to see what she's gonna do in the position.”

Mormino has an extensive history with the arts, having sold merchandise for and toured with bands such as Superchunk, a Chapel Hill-based indie rock band, and Sonic Youth.

“I am really embedded in the community in a lot of ways, and I think I have a good idea about what people want to see, and how to make that happen,” she said. “It's not gonna happen overnight, these things take time. And we already have so many amazing things happening.”

As executive director, Mormino said she hopes to create more reasons for those who live in the area to visit downtown Chapel Hill. 

“I think people want reasons to be together, and people want reasons to come downtown and be excited to do things. People were so excited about the (Wrexham vs. Chelsea) soccer game. People want more things like that,” she said. “And so I want to help create those reasons for people to just have a place to be and hang out and see all of the amazing things that are happening in the community.”

@LolaOliverio

@DTHCityState | city@dailytarheel.com 

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