BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) – Carol Roberts, longtime CEO and President of the Bay County Chamber of Commerce, announced last week her plans to retire in January.

Her illustrious career with the organization began in 1977 when she began as a receptionist.

In 2001, she began what will be a 23-year tenure as CEO and President.

When discussing her climb to the organization’s top brass, she said “You become fully knowledgeable from top to bottom. You have an appreciation at every level.”

Her career with the organization spanned almost five decades. In that time, the organization was influential in many successful endeavors, including the revitalization of Downtown Panama City, the expansion of Back Beach Rd., and the preservation of the Navy Support Activity Base in Panama City Beach, which the Pentagon planned to close in 1991.

Roberts told News 13 that her plans after retirement are still unknown, but she does intend to spend time with family and friends.