PORTLAND — The Portland Regional Chamber on Monday named Chris Hall, who had served as acting CEO since former head Godfrey Wood resigned at the end of December, as the new chief executive of the chamber.

The chamber said it conducted a national search and reviewed close to 85 candidates. The selection process included input from both inside and outside the chamber.

“At the conclusion of the search, Chris Hall emerged as the top candidate to lead our chamber forward,” said James Cohen, chairman of the Portland Regional Chamber and a partner with law firm Verrill Dana LLP. “His 23 years of chamber experience and his dynamic and collaborative leadership style are exactly what we wanted in our next leader.”

Hall has served as the chamber’s senior vice president for the last six years and as acting CEO for the past two months. Prior to his work in Portland, Hall was senior vice president and general counsel at the Maine State Chamber for 17 years.

The Portland Regional Chamber advocates and provides networking opportunities for businesses in and around Portland. It is a partnership of separate community chambers: Portland, South Portland/Cape Elizabeth, Falmouth/Cumberland and Westbrook/Gorham.

It is the largest business membership organization in Maine, representing about 1,250 members with more than 64,000 employees.

Hall plans to lead a strategic planning effort within the chamber that’s expected to be unveiled at the organization’s annual meeting in September.

“We’re building on a strong foundation, but you can expect some significant changes in the months ahead. Everything we’re working on is intended to broaden our ability to make our eight communities stronger – in every sense of the word,” Hall said.