Elissa Hashemi Is the New CREATE BRIDGES Coordinator

— Written By Becky Bowen
en Español

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NC State Extension is delighted to announce that Elissa Hashemi is the new Coordinator of the CREATE BRIDGES strategic planning initiative currently underway in the Mountain West Region of North Carolina. Elissa, or “Eli,” as the locals call her, lives in Sylva and will conduct CREATE BRIDGES strategy implementation throughout Jackson, Swain, Macon, and Graham Counties as well as in the Qualla Boundary. She is based at the Jackson County Cooperative Extension office. The CREATE BRIDGES initiative focuses on strengthening the retail, accommodation, tourism, and entertainment sectors.

Eli moved to the North Carolina mountains to attend Western Carolina University. After receiving a B.S. in Psychology, she spent two decades in hospitality management and community service. Upon completing coaching training in 2019, she focused on working with small business owners. In 2020, Eli created a social media tool to keep the community connected during the pandemic. It has grown into a valuable resource for the WNC region, providing consistent promotion of local businesses, news and events, mobilizing emergency responses, volunteer coordination and food drives. Eli is committed to serving all who call these mountains their home and is excited to join the CREATE BRIDGES WNC team.