A familiar presence at MainStreet Libertyville has been named its executive director.
Pam Hume, who has been interim director since November, accepted an offer to permanently fill the post, the board of the downtown revitalization group announced Monday.
She will become the only full-time employee of the nonprofit group that hosts 55 days of events each year in the downtown area.
Hume has been involved with the group in several capacities since its inception in 1989, beginning with scheduling events for the annual farmers market.
"It's my passion. For 20 years, I've enjoyed working with MainStreet as a volunteer," she said Monday.
She served in many capacities during that time and was interim director before the arrival of Randy Nelson in late 2006. Nelson resigned last November.
As board president from 2006 to 2008, Hume, a real estate agent, was among the public voices of the organization as it was facing a financial crisis, sparked in part by a significant cut in village funding.
The village had provided as much as $50,000 a year to the organization but that has been reduced over the past few years to $5,000.
Hume was among the leaders who revived membership efforts.
"We were about to go under. Now, we're dependent primarily on our memberships and sponsorships," she said.
"I think the community is much more aware that we're a 501-C3 nonprofit and we're not affiliated with the village."
One of the goals is to make existing events more attractive, while boosting corporate sponsorship levels, Hume said.
"We can't rely on membership alone for funding," she added. MainStreet's annual budget is about $300,000 she said.
Efforts also will be directed at bringing more "meat and potatoes" assistance to downtown merchants, such as seminars, Hume said.
MainStreet programs throughout the state are facing a critical time. Last week, the Illinois Main Street Program, which has nearly 70 participating communities, was placed on Landmarks Illinois' Ten Most Endangered Places list.
Technical assistance services and the annual statewide conference have been eliminated because of state budget cuts, and the National Main Street Center in Washington, D.C., which provides unified marketing strategies, has placed the Illinois program on suspension.
The program in Illinois has generated more than $400 million in downtown reinvestment and created 4,800 jobs, according to Landmarks Illinois.