2020 Burnsville- Yancey Chamber Board of Directors

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Jim Gentry
President | Budget & Finance Committee Chair | Board Member since 2019

Jim has been a Financial Advisor with Edward Jones for 8 years. Prior to Edward Jones he was in the restaurant business for almost 20 years in several different capacities including owner/operator at one point. Jim has been a Chamber member since 2013 and has been on the Board for two years now.

He is currently on the Board of Directors for P.A.T.H. and the Yancey Fund. He has also served on the Board for Habitat for Humanity of Madison County in the past. In addition to serving the community, Jim enjoys hiking in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina.

Jim also serves on the Travel and Tourism Committee.

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Kari Weaver
President Elect | Small Business Committee

As the owner of One of a Kind Art Gallery (OOAK), Kari is passionate about introducing people to handcrafted objects and helping them explore their connection to them. She's equally passionate about helping artists sell their work. Weaver is a potter herself, who received her Bachelor of Fine Arts with a concentration in Ceramics in 1996 from Clemson University. She spent 15 years honing her craft before buying OOAK in 2011. The gallery now represents over 150 local artists and craftspeople.  

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Lucy Doll
Secretary | Membership Committee | Board Member since 2019

Lucy has been an individual Chamber member since 2006, when she instituted the “Doggie Jail” for the Mt. Mitchell Crafts Fair. Though she has an electronics curse upon her, she has been the office manager at Mountain Electronics, Inc. for over 10 years. She is Vice Chair of the Carolina Mountains Literary Festival Board of Directors.

Her former lives include being a Long Distance Operator back in the days when one dialed ‘0’ to call long distance or the police, administering the Criminal Justice Partnership Program for Yancey, Mitchell, and Madison Counties, and administering the public service programs at the venerable National Theatre in Washington, DC (where she lived on a houseboat). She is a sometimes-writer, and rescue-dog lover who blames television and celebrity-worship in politics for pretty much everything she doesn’t like.

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Jake Blood
Travel and Tourism Committee Chair

Jake retired in 2003 from the US Air Force. He is a co-founder of NC High Peaks. His advocacy for the mountains has gifted the community with his directing the Economic Development Commission from 2007 to 2009. He is a Past President of the Yancey History Association, and an advocate of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail Association, of which he was an active member. 

He is married to Cynthia Rawls Blood, who retired in 2005 from the US Army.

Jake also serves as Chair on the Travel and Tourism Committee.

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Leigh Howell

Leigh grew up in Yancey County, but attended Pinecrest High School in Pinehurst when the family moved east. He did his chef apprenticeship in Southern Pines, and then majored in management and economics and graduated from the business school at Western Carolina University. He was an executive chef for the Marriott franchise, and was the Food Service Director at the Billy Graham Training Center in Swannanoa. He is now the owner of Pig N Grits in Burnsville. Leigh is happily married to Melissa Howell. (He is not sure if he’s related to Craig).

John Silver | Events Committee

John is the owner of Homeplace Beer Company on West Main Street. A graduate of Mountain Heritage, John grew up here in Burnsville, NC.  After a journey down to Greensboro for school, a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail, and a successful career brewing in Asheville, John returned to Yancey County to open Homeplace Beer Company in 2017.

He puts in long hours to keep Homeplace running, but when he’s off, you can find John spending time with his (creative, amazing) wife Emily and two (spunky, precocious) young daughters. His favorite brew is the Natural Traveler, a dank IPA named as a nod to local lore of an enigmatic wanderer.

Bryan Peterson

Bryan is a native of Yancey County. He attended Mars Hill University where he received a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. He has spent the past 25 years in human resources and is currently Regional Human Resources Manager at Altec Industries in Burnsville North Carolina and responsible for facilities in Birmingham, Alabama and Osceola, Iowa. Altec is a leading provider of products and services to the electric utility, telecommunications, tree care, lights and signs, and contractor markets. They deliver products and services in more than 100 countries throughout the world. The Burnsville plant has 900+ associates.

Bryan is very active in the community and high country region. He currently serves on the High Country Workforce Development Board as Chairman and Mayland Community College Board of Trustees. He has also served on the Yancey County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, Yancey County Committee on Aging Board Chairman for 20+ years, Yancey County Schools Business Education Advisory Board and Carolina Star Program Board of Directors with the North Carolina Department of Labor.

Bryan and his wife Anita live in Yancey County and they have one daughter who lives in Raleigh.

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Anthony Randolph

Anthony Randolph is the managing partner of Prescription Pad of Burnsville, Prescription Pad of Marion, Twisted Laurel Eatery & Taps, Daphne at Twisted Laurel, and Twisted Laurel West.  Prior to that, he worked for a large chain drug company for 21 years as a manager and district manager. 

Aside from being a managing partner, Anthony is the President of the Cougar Touchdown Club. He also coached a travel basketball team for 10 summers and is an avid golfer. Anthony was born and raised in Burnsville, NC and he obtained his BSBA in Marketing from Appalachian State University. 

He is married to Kelly C. Randolph, a CPA, who is an instructor at AB Tech and does bookkeeping for several local companies. He has one son, Callin Randolph, who is a senior at Mtn. Heritage HS and will be attending ETSU in the fall.


Tommy Buchanan 
Board Member since 2021

Tommy is the co-owner of Buchanan and Young located at 713 East Main Street in Burnsville , NC. Tommy graduated in 1985 from the NADA Dealer Academy. He enjoys all sports, bird hunting with his dog Sissy, motorcycle riding, and running. Buchanan and Young has been in the automobile business since 1965, when brothers-in-law, Warren Buchanan and Joe Young started the business. Now in the third generation, Tommy along with his son, Thomas, are proud to be a part of the business community in Yancey County.


Tommy is married to Susan Buchanan who is retired from Yancey County Schools. She now works part time in the family business. They have one son, Thomas Buchanan who is married to Amy Fitzgerald Buchanan and one grand daughter Evelyn Rae Buchanan.

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Jamie McMahan
Board Member since 2021

A Yancey County native, Jamie McMahan serves as Planning & Economic Development Director for Yancey County and the Town of Burnsville. Holding certifications in Sustainable Community Development and Economic Development from Duke University and Development and Capital Finance from the UNC School of Government, Jamie is a member of the North Carolina Economic Development Association, the North Carolina Chapter of the American Planning Association, the National Rural Economic Development Association and the Southern Economic Development Council. During his tenure with Yancey County Jamie has worked on numerous business recruitment projects, large and small, public facility and infrastructure projects and multiple building reuse, redevelopment and economic development projects, as well as volunteering with and serving on the board of several Yancey County nonprofits, including currently serving as Executive Director of the Yancey Advancement Foundation and as President of the seven-county Asheville-metro regional economic development council CarolinaWest, Inc.