SIDNEY, NE — “I’ve been in and out of Sidney for the past two years and I just felt like Sidney had such great potential. The people here are amazing.”

Meet Kim Matthews, Sidney’s new economic development director.

Matthews started in the role Monday. She replaces Melissa Norgard who recently stepped down to focus full-time on her business. The fourth-generation Nebraska says she’s impressed by the work ethic in the area.

“Sidney has that imprint of success prior to Cabela’s even being here. The fact so many people decided to stay and that entrepreneurial spirit just fired back up. I think that’s one of the most exciting things about the area.

Matthews has 20 years of experience in the community development field. That includes working with for-profit entities to create non-profits and connecting UNL researchers with rural communities.

Now she turns her attention to supporting Sidney’s local businesses.

“I do really see my job as serving the community and being here as the best resource I can be.”

Matthews says there was no doubt Sidney would continue on strong in a post-Cabela’s era. She’s excited to hop on board to help the next generation of business owners execute their visions.

“People are really ready to move on and start to reform their identity here in Sidney. There’s a lot of really interesting efforts going on around. I want to be an advocate for all that.”

People will have a chance to meet Matthews at a Meet and Greet at Pedaler’s Corner in Sidney on Tuesday, July 20. People will also get to meet new Cheyenne County Chamber director McKailie Carnahan-Kuhns at the event.