Danielle Williams recently was named executive director of the Victoria Main Street Program. The City of Victoria recently assumed management responsibilities for the program, a partnership with Victoria Main Street Inc. that will allow the program to make full use of city resources in its goal of building a thriving downtown.
As director, Williams will facilitate communication between the Victoria Main Street Board and the City; build relationships with downtown business owners and lessees; and work with the board to implement the program’s four-point approach to Main Street revitalization – economic vitality, promotion, organization and design. She will serve under the direction of City Manager Jesús A. Garza and Assistant City Manager Mike Etienne.
“Downtown revitalization was identified as a priority in the Victoria 2035 Comprehensive Plan, and the new relationship with Main Street will allow the City to play a more direct role in making it a priority,” Garza said. “Danielle’s experience and passion for the community will be an asset to our efforts to make downtown a more thriving environment for locals and visitors alike.”
A large part of the City’s new Main Street effort will involve growing a volunteer base to assist with events, marketing efforts and other initiatives, and residents will have plenty of opportunities to get involved.
Williams said she’s excited by the potential she sees downtown and looks forward to working with the City Manager’s Office to promote economic development in the area.
“I hope that I can make more of an impact in this role,” she said. “Downtown and Main Street are the heart of the city, and I want to make it shine.”
Williams graduated from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in 2008 with a degree in recreation and has worked for the City of Victoria for 11 years, most recently as the assistant director of Parks and Recreation for six years. Other roles she has held with the city include managing advertising and events with the Convention and Visitors Bureau and serving as recreation services manager for Parks and Recreation.
Williams has developed extensive familiarity with Victoria’s downtown through her work promoting the city and organizing events. Over the years, she has assisted heavily with iconic downtown events such as Bootfest and spearheaded the development of the Coors Light Summer Street Dance series, which brings live music to DeLeon Plaza and helps raise money for local charities.
Williams said her knowledge of city government will allow her to serve as a liaison and “break down barriers” between the City and Victoria residents by helping Main Street Program board members and volunteers identify resources to accomplish the program’s mission.
Williams recently attended a statewide Main Street manager training in Elgin and her first board meeting as director of the program. The program’s short-term goals include focusing on the program’s organizational structure and growing a volunteer/stakeholder base, which will help to lay the groundwork for a forthcoming strategic/master planning effort.