Janet Ady is an experienced business strategist who works with expanding and relocating companies, and the communities that want to recruit these kinds of companies, with a focus on value-added agriculture. As president of Ady Voltedge, she has led growth initiatives for over 300 companies and for over 200 economic development organizations.
Ms. Ady's background is in market research and strategy development. In that capacity, she has conducted over 3,000 in-depth qualitative interviews with business and technical decision-makers across a broad swath of businesses. Her knowledge of multiple industries allows her to provide value to individual businesses as well as communities and regions targeting specific sectors.
She also brings an in-depth knowledge of the site selection process, especially in terms of understanding what factors are evaluated during each step along the decision-making process, how to optimally position places, and develop compelling, differentiating messages.
Jim Allen is consultant to a number of 3D printing companies and the former Director of Economic Programs at Shapeways, Inc., the world's leading 3D printing marketplace and community platform. He worked closely with the company's founders, government agencies and the economic development community to manage the company's portfolio of economic development incentives. Jim was also involved in creating the Shapeways “Factory of the Future” in New York City; leveraging his expertise in manufacturing, site selection and product development.
Jim is also a 3D printing and additive manufacturing industry expert at Ridgetop Research, a leading research platform for institutional investment firms. Jim's additional clients include the New York City-based crowdsourcing company ChallengePost, along with other internet and manufacturing start-ups, incubators and accelerators.
Before relocating to New York City from Chicago, Jim was the Director of McHenry County EDC's Business Accelerator for Innovation and Collaboration (BAIC). This SBA-funded initiative was established to focus on the needs of over 600 manufacturers in McHenry County, providing business assistance and consultation free of charge. Utilizing a significant network of relationships, BAIC provided a vital link to the state, federal and private resources available to manufacturers with a focus on creating jobs, ideas and economic wealth. During that time Jim also co-founded and was COO of Micromanufacturing of Northern Illinois, a contract manufacturer of micromachined parts. The company operated out of and utilized equipment and personnel from EIGERlab, a mixed-use incubator in Rockford, Illinois.
Jim earned his MBA degree from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and his BS degree in electrical engineering from the University of Virginia. He served four years as an officer in the US Navy upon completion of his undergraduate degree.
Doug Baker, 55, is chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Ecolab Inc. A trusted partner at more than one million customer locations, Ecolab is the global leader in water, hygiene and energy technologies and services that protect people and vital resources. With 2013 sales of $13 billion and 45,000 associates, Ecolab delivers comprehensive solutions and on-site service to promote safe food, maintain clean environments, optimize water and energy use and improve operational efficiencies for customers in the food, healthcare, energy, hospitality and industrial markets in more than 170 countries around the world. Ecolab has been named to Ethisphere's list of the World's Most Ethical Companies for seven consecutive years, and included in Forbes' ranking of the World's Most Innovative Companies for three consecutive years. Ecolab also has been named to Chief Executive Magazine's list of the Best Companies for Leaders (2013 and 2014), CDP Performance and Disclosure Leadership Indices (2013) and The Civic 50 (2013).
Baker began his career with Ecolab in 1989, following seven years in brand management at Procter & Gamble. At Ecolab, he has held key roles in marketing, sales and general management in both the U.S. and Europe, and leadership positions including vice president and general manager of Kay, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ecolab; senior vice president of the Institutional Sector; and president and chief operating officer of Ecolab. In July 2004, Baker was named president and chief executive officer and in May 2006, added chairman of the board to his duties. In 2011, Baker led Ecolab's merger with Nalco, an $8 billion transaction which nearly doubled the size of the company. In 2013, he strengthened Ecolab's energy services business through the $2.3 billion acquisition of Champion Technologies.
In 2012, Baker was inducted into the Minnesota Business Hall of Fame and in 2013, The Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal named Baker the 2013 Executive of the Year.
In addition to his Ecolab responsibilities, Baker serves on the board of directors of Target Corporation and U.S. Bancorp. He also is trustee emeritus of the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and is a member of the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP).
Baker is active in the civic life of the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn. He serves on the executive committee of the Greater MSP Partnership, a private-public partnership whose mission is to stimulate economic growth and prosperity in the region. Baker also serves on the board of overseers of the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota as well as on the executive committee of the Minnesota Business Partnership, an organization comprised of CEOs from Minnesota's top 100 companies focused on further enhancing the region's quality of life. He is a board member of Parent Aware for School Readiness (PASR), a nonprofit organization to support the statewide expansion of Parent Aware, Minnesota's Quality Rating and Improvement System.
Baker received a bachelor's degree in English from Holy Cross College in Worcester, Mass.
After working in the financial services industry in New York City, Rob entered the economic development field in 1993 as Director of Community Development for the Village of Saranac Lake, NY. In that role, he facilitated the community's first economic development strategy that led to securing $3 million for downtown implementation projects and crafted a successful tax incentive program to promote commercial district private development. Subsequently, Rob served as Managing Director for River Street Planning & Development located in Troy, NY where he managed staff and firm finances, as well as provided consulting services to economic development organizations and municipal clients. Rob started Camoin Associates in 1999 specifically to provide economic development services to Economic Development Organizations, government, developers, and businesses.
Rob is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), past Chair of IEDC's Membership Development Advisory Committee and currently serves as the Vice Chair of its Awards in Excellence Committee. Additionally, he is one of three Board Members representing New York for the Northeast Economic Developers' Association (NEDA) and serves as a Board member for the NYS Statewide Zone Capital Corporation. He has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in finance and economics from St. Bonaventure University and a Master of Urban Planning degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo.
Rob has made many economic development presentations to municipal officials and economic development professionals including, "The Importance of Fiscal Impact Analysis on the Economic Development & Comprehensive Planning Process", "How to Conduct a Market Analysis" and "Three Critical Ingredients to Successful Economic Development."
Danielle Casey joined the City of Scottsdale in June of 2013. She is responsible for the oversight of the Economic Development Department, which includes executing the City's initiatives related to new business attraction, business retention and expansion, small business and entrepreneurial support, downtown development, and tourism.
Prior to joining the City of Scottsdale, Ms. Casey served in various executive roles at the City of Maricopa since June 2005, most recently as the Assistant City Manager. Departments under her oversight included economic development, community services, development services, and city-wide marketing and communications activities. Since the inception of the City of Maricopa, she managed a number of noteworthy tasks in the establishment of the City's economic development office, such as the creation of the Industrial Development Authority of the City of Maricopa, the authorship and Council approval of a Fast Track Development Program, the creation and implementation of the City's Business Retention and Expansion Program, and a city-wide branding initiative and 5-year Economic Development Strategic Plan. The creation of the City's Redevelopment District Area Plan was also developed under her purview and in its first year received two grant awards. Prior to joining the City of Maricopa, Ms. Casey attained significant experience in the nonprofit sector working in fundraising, marketing, and event and membership management.
Ms. Casey received her Bachelor's Degree from Arizona State University and Masters of Administration from Northern Arizona University, and is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) as well as a certified Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP). She is a member of the International Economic Development Council, the Arizona Association of Economic Development (where she serves as President-Elect), and the Greater Phoenix Economic Council's Ambassador Steering Committee. In May of 2010, Ms. Casey was the proud recipient of the ‘Economic Developer of the Year–Small Community' award from the Arizona Association for Economic Development.
She is currently a proud resident of the City of Scottsdale.
Steven Ceulemans is vice president of innovation and technology for the Birmingham Business Alliance, where he supports the growth of the Alabama knowledge economy through technology-based economic development in the Birmingham region.
Steven previously served as the director of technology commercialization for the New Orleans BioInnovation Center, growing technology startups in New Orleans, LA. He has trained and worked in research and development roles for a number of organizations including the PriceWaterhouseCoopers Health Research Institute, Software AG, the Louisiana Cancer Research Consortium, Tibotec (Johnson & Johnson), Procter & Gamble, and the Joint Research Centre (European Commission). Steven received the Louisiana Governor's Technology Award as Academic Technology Leader of the Year in 2010, and the DCI national 40 under 40 in economic development award in 2013. He holds master's degrees in international business from Vlekho Business School in Brussels and in biochemistry and molecular biology from Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans. Steven is a National Academies Christine Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Fellow and serves as a consultant to the National Research Council in Washington D.C.
JoAnn Crary is the President of Saginaw Future, a non-profit economic development organization. She has held that position since 1993 and has been in economic development since the mid 1980's. Crary completed her undergraduate degree from Ferris State University and has a Masters degree from Central Michigan University. She is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD), a graduate of the University of Oklahoma's Economic Development Institute and is a certified Economic Development Finance Professional.
Crary is a member of the MEDC Collaborative Development Council and the Business Attraction Committee. She is currently on the International Economic Development Council's Board of Directors and serves as Secretary/Treasurer, is a member of the Governance Committee and the Economic Development Research Partners. IEDC is the foremost international economic development organization with nearly 4300 members. She has served on the IEDC Board since 2006.
Crary is also on the Saginaw County Revolving Loan Fund Board, Saginaw Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, Citizens Bank Market Area Board and the Saginaw Hospital Finance Authority. Crary also serves on the Board of Fellows at Saginaw Valley State University, Mobile Medical Response Finance Committee and is an ex officio member of the Saginaw County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.
Crary was recognized in 2013 as one of the Great Women of the Great Lakes Bay, was given the Wally Bronner Community Spirit Award from the Saginaw County Chapter of American Red Cross in 2010. She was also honored with the inaugural Economic Leadership Award from Junior Achievement of Northeast Michigan in 2010. The Saginaw County Chamber of Commerce gave Crary its inaugural Athena Award in 2005 and in 2001, the Michigan Economic Developers Association named Crary as the MEDA Medalist Award winner. In 1996, she was honored by Governor Engler as the Economic Developer of the Year for outstanding contributions in economic development.
JoAnn and her two children, KaLynn and Michael reside in Frankenmuth.
Mr. Richard K. Davis has been the Chairman of US BanCorp. (DE) at U.S. BanCorp. Equipment Finance, Inc. since December 11, 2007 and has been its Chief Executive Officer since December 2006 and President since October 19, 2004. Mr. Davis serves as the Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of U.S. Bank, the nation's fifth-largest bank. He serves as an Assistant Vice President of Claims at Maiden Re. He served as the Chief Operating Officer of US Bancorp, the holding company of Elavon Inc. from October 19, 2004 to December 2006. Mr. Davis has more than 30 years of experience in banking industry and was a key leader in the successful mergers of Firstar Corporation with U.S. BanCorp. in 2001, Firstar with Mercantile Bancorporation in 1999, and Star Banc Corporation with Firstar in 1998. Mr. Davis was responsible for Consumer Banking, including Retail Payment Solutions (card services), and he assumed additional responsibility for Commercial Banking from 2003 to 2004. He joined U.S. BanCorp. in November 1993.
Mr. Davis served as an Executive Vice President for Consumer Banking of Star Banc Corporation since 1993 to 2003. During this time, he also served as an Executive Vice President of Bank of America and of Security Pacific. Currently, he serves as the Chairman of Financial Services Roundtable. Previously, he was also Vice Chairman for Consumer Banking and Payment Services of US BanCorp. (DE) from February 2001 to October 2004. He served as Vice Chairman for Consumer Banking of Firstar Corporation from 1998 to 2001 and has also serves as Unit Vice Chairman of Xcel Energy Inc.
Mr. Davis has been an Executive Director of US BanCorp. since July 18, 2006. He serves as a Director of BITS Financial Services Roundtable. He has been a Director of The American Red Cross since January 26, 2011. He serves as a Director of U.S. BanCorp. Equipment Finance, Inc. and The Clearing House LLC. He has been a Director of Xcel Energy Inc. since 2006 and serves as its Lead Independent Director. He serves as a Director of the American Bankers Association, and Visa International, the Minnesota Orchestra, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, the Guthrie Theatre and the Minneapolis YMCA. Mr. Davis served as a Director of VISA U.S.A. Inc.
Mr. Davis holds a Bachelors Degree in Economics from California State University. He completed Banking School Programs at University of Washington and Cornell University.
Steve joined DCI in 2004 and has managed more than 20 economic development accounts, ranging from rural communities like the State of Wyoming to major metropolises like San Diego and Houston. He is currently working with several communities to promote their entrepreneurial environments nationally, including Albuquerque, Birmingham and Northwest Ohio. As a part of that outreach, he has placed dozens of client stories in Inc., Entrepreneur, Fast Company, TechCrunch, The Wall Street Journal and Wired. He is a graduate of Pennsylvania State University with a focus in broadcast journalism. He lives in Denver, CO with his wife, Michelle, and puppy, Sonoma.
Jela Ellefson's work as the Senior Grants Manager for the non-profit Eastern Market Corporation focuses on ensuring financial stability and growth of City of Detroit's Eastern Market, the longest operating historic working food district in the US. Before the advent of mobile refrigeration and the consolidation of large grocery chains, Eastern Market was the place for farmers and merchants to engage in commerce. It was local before local was cool. Over the years, with grocery consolidation, transportation improvements, and large scale distribution companies, Eastern Market's Wholesale Market, while still a significant economic driver for produce sales in the state of Michigan, had lost some of its luster. The retail-focused Saturday Market, conversely, has continued to flourish and is what the market is generally known for today. Jela works on improving Eastern Market District's infrastructure to incorporate environmental and financial sustainability that will allow it to succeed in the decades to come, as well as on securing funding to connecting growers with new markets expanding the activity and volume of the Wholesale Market, which will strengthen the role of Eastern Market as a true urban food hub and will help localize the food system in Southeast Michigan.
Janyce Fadden's experience in both the private sector and leading a nonprofit have established her as a sought after leader and consultant. Currently she is Executive in Residence at the University of North Alabama assisting the College of Business with engagement strategies and President at Jbfadden Enterprises LLC, a management consulting firm.
In her previous role as President of the Rockford Area Economic Development Council, Fadden was responsible for managing all the organization's efforts, including business retention and expansion, new business recruitment, business startup and entrepreneurship, and improving the business climate of our region. Under Fadden's leadership, the RAEDC created and implemented innovative approaches to strategic planning for economic development and sustaining funding to support the organization. Fadden facilitated a collaborative approach to regional economic development work. In eight years, the results of this collaborative work resulted in the retention or creation of 18,700 jobs, $1,300M of capital investment and occupation of 13M square feet of development. During that time she served on the boards of the Rockford Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, Rockford Chamber of Commerce, Rockford Local Development Corporation, Alignment Rockford, Rockford Area Strategic Initiatives, and Stateline Angels. Janyce also served as Executive Director of the I-39 Logistics Corridor Association.
Prior to joining the RAEDC, Fadden served in various capacities as President, Vice President, and General Manager for major multinational corporations including Honeywell, General Signal, Applied Power, Pacific Scientific, and Danaher.
Fadden earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering and Management from Clarkson University in Potsdam, New York, and she earned her Master of Business Administration degree from Northern Illinois University.
Over 35 years of experience have provided Tim Feemster, Managing Principal with a variety of hands on problem solving situations in real estate, transportation, logistics, distribution, and marketing. Tim is quoted frequently in the industry press and makes over 20 keynote presentations a year to professional organizations.
Before forming Foremost Quality Logistics, Feemster has experience as a senior manager in three manufacturing companies, a general manager, a consultant, an executive in two third party logistics providers, and a Practice Group leader in two Real Estate firms. Feemster has been responsible for building construction management, transportation & warehouse operations; real estate site selection; network optimization; strategic planning; lease management; marketing; inventory planning and deployment; lean systems & quality management; and private fleet management.
Feemster holds an M.B.A. in Marketing from the Ross School of Business, University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, a B.A. in Mathematics from DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, and is a Six Sigma Green Belt. Feemster is an active member in the Warehouse Education and Research Council (WERC.org), where he is a Past President; Council Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP.org, DePauw Alumni Board, and a board member of the DePauw DFW Regional Alumni Chapter. He is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Trade Data Exchange (TDE) Corporation.
Peter Frosch is the Director of Strategic Partnerships at GREATER MSP. In this role, he works with external stakeholders to develop and implement regional economic development strategy, and leads the organization's 56 member Partner Advisory Council. Prior to joining the organization he served as Legislative Director for Congresswoman Betty McCollum in Washington D.C . and as Policy Director at the Minnesota Environmental Initiative in Minneapolis. Peter earned a bachelor's degree from Northwestern University and master's degree in International Relations from Ireland's Dublin City University where he studied as a George Mitchell Scholar.
Gynii is the managing director of Gynii Gilliam & Associates, a newly-formed consulting firm specializing in economic development, including site selection assistance, community development training, and business/organizational strategic planning. She has over 25 years of experience in the field, through both the private and public sectors and in both rural and urban communities.
Prior to striking out on her own, Ms. Gilliam was the Chief Economic Development Officer at the Idaho Department of Commerce where she was responsible for economic growth, across all industry sectors. Under her leadership, her team helped bring 3500 direct jobs and $700 million in capital investment to the state over an 18 month period in 2012-2013. Previous work in eastern Idaho also netted over 2000 jobs and over $600 million in capital investment for the Pocatello region (Pop 80,000). She has also worked on successful projects in rural central Idaho, as well as Los Angeles and Detroit.
Ms. Gilliam holds a Master's Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from the University of California, Los Angeles and studied abroad at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. She was a California State Scholar and the recipient of the Rackham Graduate School Fellowship.
Gynii is involved in many local civic organizations, as well as various state and national economic development organizations. She has presented at the National Council of State Governments, the Northwest Food Processors Association, the Pacific Northwest Economic Development Council, and many others. She also teaches a graduate course in community and regional planning at Boise State University. Gynii and her husband Tony have two adult sons and have been residents of Idaho for over 25 years.
Michael Goldstein is a serial entrepreneur with a passion for bringing unique ideas to the light of day. Michael's experience has centered around consumer facing, online, transactional businesses, but is as broad as selling cinder blocks to university students for extra storage space. He now leverages his experience running Exhilarator, a start-up accelerator in Washington DC.
SwitchPitch is Michael's brainchild, with the goal of forging meaningful relationships between start-ups and big companies.
Since Oct 2006, Bob Guirl has been responsible for Strategy and Business Development for UTC Aerospace Systems' Electric Systems business unit. He is responsible for establishing strategies to pursue and win new business, and leads the competitive assessment activities and evaluation of merger and acquisition candidates.
Guirl is also a volunteer member of the Alignment Rockford Operating Board, a non-profit public school support organization for Rockford, Illinois public schools, and is the vice chair of its High School Pathways Committee.
From 2001 through 2006, Guirl led the company's activities for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner program, coordinating marketing, product development and systems integration efforts for the complete 787 UTC Aerospace Systems work package.
He has spent his more than 30-year professional career entirely with UTC Aerospace Systems, joining the company then known as Sundstrand Corporation in 1982. As program manager for Airbus systems, Guirl led the development team that redesigned the electrical power generating systems for the Airbus A320, A330 and A340 aircraft. As resident manager in Cheltenham England, Guirl led the acquisition of UK-based Dowty Aerospace's ram air turbine emergency power business.
Upon graduation in 1984 from the University of Illinois, with a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering, Mr. Guirl joined the company as project engineer for the NASA Space Shuttle program, and supported the Space Shuttle team in various roles for more than 11 years.
Mr. Guirl was born, and resides, in Illinois with his wife and two grown children.
Leads General Mills' efforts to incorporate minority and women-owned businesses into the company's supply chain, a $500 million effort that is expanding at a rate of 8 percent each year. Darren works to help small companies do business with General Mills, contributing valuable dollars to local economies while helping his company expand its footprint.
Michael Harris is a Managing Partner of the General Partner at Core Innovation Captial, and has over 15 years experience in venture capital, M&A, operations, and technology. He has extensive Board of Director experience and has helped direct growth and business development strategies in several health care, business services, and technology companies. Mike was also a partner in a venture capital firm with upper quartile returns when compared to the same vintage and style venture funds. Mike holds a BA from St. John's University and an MS in Economics and Public Policy from the University of Minnesota.
Mr. Imboden is a place expert with eight years of private commercial real estate experience in brokerage, development, and finance. He manages Hennepin County's Transit-Oriented Development program. Mr. Imboden managed real estate development projects and finance for The Ackerberg Group, a Minneapolis-based boutique commercial real estate firm. Passionate about how and why places change, he has been an active community leader with experience as the President of a business association, neighborhood association board member, a policy advocate, and has published two local history books. B.S. University of Minnesota (Urban Studies).
Christina Jennings has fifteen years of experience with community development loan funds and more than twenty years of experience in nonprofit organizations and social ventures. Prior to joining Northcountry in August 2008, she served as Executive Director of Katalysis Bootstrap Fund, a $5 million international micro-finance loan fund and as fund manager for another international investment fund supporting microfinance programs in Nicaragua. As Program Manager for the Metropolitan Consortium of Community Developers she managed a microloan fund serving women, low-income individuals, immigrants and people of color in Minneapolis. As Program and Training Manager for the Nonprofits Assistance Fund, she developed the organization's training programs and provided financial and management assistance to immigrant-led nonprofits in the Twin Cities. Jennings expertise includes fund management, raising social and impact investments and grants, community lending and microfinance, and organizational management and governance. She has served on the board of directors of numerous nonprofit organizations. Currently she serves on the board of Partners for Women's Equality and on the Finance Committee of the City of Lakes Community Land Trust. Jennings holds an MA in Community and Economic Development and Nonprofit Management from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota and a BA in Gender and International Development from Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts. She is a certified Community Development Financial Professional.
In his third year as President, Eric Kaler continues to be focused on core priorities: academic excellence, access for qualified students, stewardship of tuition and public dollars, a world-class research enterprise that aligns with the needs of the state of Minnesota, and a deep commitment to public engagement and outreach, locally and globally.
During the 2012-13 academic year, and in his first biennial budget request to the Minnesota Legislature, Kaler forged a partnership with the State of Minnesota by achieving a tuition freeze for Minnesota resident undergraduates.
He also achieved $35.8 million in research investments from the state. In an initiative called MnDRIVE—the Minnesota Discovery, Research and Innovation Economy program—research emphasis matches some of the University's research and discovery strengths with the state's most pressing needs and key industries.
This year, Kaler and the University community are engaged in a consultative strategic planning process to set the institution's course for the next decade.
In 2010, President Kaler was elected to the National Academy of Engineering. In 2012, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano named him to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Academic Advisory Council. In 2013, he was named a Charter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.
Kaler received his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University in 1982. He went on to become one of the nation's foremost experts on “complex fluids,” which have applications in drug delivery, food processing, pharmaceuticals, and manufacturing.
Before coming to the “U,” Kaler served from 2007 to 2011 as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Stony Brook University in Stony Brook, N.Y. Previously he was dean of the University of Delaware's College of Engineering. He also taught at the University of Washington. He received his undergraduate degree from the California Institute of Technology in 1978.
Eric Kaler and his wife, Karen, have two adult sons.
As President & CEO of Enterprise Minnesota, Bob Kill leads the organization's efforts to achieve its strategic, growth, and operational goals. A long-time manufacturing executive, Bob is passionate about helping manufacturers grow and bringing attention to manufacturing as a driver of Minnesota's economy. Bob is committed to connecting public and private stakeholders of manufacturers together in order to foster the collaboration needed to produce a thriving manufacturing industry.
Bob is recognized as a spokesperson for Minnesota's manufacturing industry and is regularly quoted in national and regional media on manufacturing trends and industry outlook. He has appeared before the Minnesota State Legislature and the U.S. Congress emphasizing the high value of manufacturing to our economy. Bob received national recognition in 2010 by NIST-MEP, as Group Innovator, for the State of Manufacturing® strategy. In 2011 he was recognized by Twin Cities Business Magazine as “one of 200 Minnesotans you should know” noting he is helping all understand that “making something” is cool again.
Prior to leading Enterprise Minnesota, Bob served as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Ciprico Inc., a manufacturer of high performance data and networking systems. Before joining Ciprico, he served in senior management positions with Northern Telecom Inc. His career in manufacturing began with the Burroughs Corporation.
Bob serves on the Minnesota Job Skills Partnership Board, the Minnesota Agriculture and Economic Development Board, University of Minnesota, Morris Chancellor's Advisory Board, and Minnesota Center for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence Advisory Council. Additionally, he has served on numerous industry boards, including software, technology, manufacturing, and startup companies. Kill is also an avid bicyclist and golfer, both of which he has little time for because he is so dedicated to helping manufacturing enterprises grow profitably.
Jim Kumon is the Executive Director of the Minnesota based non-profit, Strong Towns, which is focused on helping America's towns achieve financial strength and resiliency. Born and raised in rural southeastern Michigan, he is a graduate of the College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan. Jim started his professional career in architectural and urban design in Los Angeles and later practiced and lived in Denver.
He has worked as a designer and project manager across a range of land development, civic buildings and transportation infrastructure projects, working mostly with clients in governmental agencies. His professional and community organizing activities over the last ten years have focused on improving life and the built environment at the neighborhood scale. Now based in Minneapolis, Jim currently serves on the board of directors of his neighborhood association, chairs its redevelopment committee and is a liaison to the business association serving southwest part of the city.
Paul Krutko is Ann Arbor SPARK's president and CEO. Ann Arbor SPARK is a public-private partnership of business, government and academic institutions working to create economic prosperity in the Ann Arbor region.In his role as CEO, he leads the organization's efforts to expand the regional economy through initiatives to support entrepreneurs and early stage companies accelerating their growth to full potential. SPARK also supports the retention, expansion and attraction of mature companies that will grow the region's GDP. SPARK convenes the Ann Arbor region's public-private leaders and other stakeholders to implement a strategic framework designed to maintain and to enhance the region's global competitiveness.
Paul has 35 years of economic and community expertise. Before joining Ann Arbor SPARK, he led San Jose, California's economic development efforts, where he served as chief development officer. He has also worked in economic development for the cities of Cleveland OH and Jacksonville FL. In addition to his economic development leadership for San Jose and other cities, Paul founded Peloton Development, a consultancy devoted to advising businesses and municipal, regional, state and national governments on economic development and climate prosperity strategies and on creating high performing economic development leaders and teams.
He earned a Bachelor of Urban Planning and Design degree from the University of Cincinnati, College of Design, Architecture and Art. In addition to his responsibilities as SPARK CEO, Paul Krutko is honored to serve as chair of the preeminent professional economic development organization in the world, the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). He was designated a Fellow Member of IEDC in 2009.
Michael J. Landsburg is the Vice President of Real Estate for NFI and has been with the company since 2005. He is responsible for managing the real estate activities for the company comprised of an owned and leased portfolio of over 23 million square feet located throughout the United States & Canada. NFI is a privately held integrated supply chain solutions company with operations throughout North America generating over $1 Billion in revenues, utilizing 2,200 tractors, 7,000 trailers, and 6,500 employees. Prior to NFI, Michael was an acquisitions and development associate for a mid-Atlantic real estate company for 4 years. Michael is a graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a licensed Real Estate Broker in New Jersey. He is also currently pursuing his CCIM designation and is a committee chair for the Industrial Asset Management Council (IAMC) along with being active in NAIOP, CoreNet, and CSCMP. Michael lives in Philadelphia with his wife and 2 young children.
Michael Langley is the founding CEO of GREATER MSP, the Minneapolis Saint Paul Regional Economic Development Partnership. GREATER MSP leads global promotion, regional strategy, and project management for economic growth and job creation in the Minneapolis Saint Paul region, with over three million residents and a Gross Metropolitan Product of over $200 Billion. He brings years of experience to the role as a widely recognized economic development strategist who has also led successful regional economic development organizations in Florida and Pennsylvania.
Michael's award winning work as a practitioner includes his leadership as CEO of the Allegheny Conference on Community Development in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, often regarded as a globally leading organizational model for regional economic development, regional advocacy, and public policy research. It also includes the founding of Langley Group, a national economic development consulting firm focused on regional best practices and economic growth strategies, where Michael served as President.
Prior to becoming an economic development practitioner, Michael led a successful corporate career, spent primarily in the technology sector working in leadership positions for a number of Westinghouse/CBS divisions, including serving as President and CEO of Westinghouse Audio Intelligence Devices, Inc., a world leader in wireless surveillance technology.
A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Mike also earned a MS in information systems from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. He served as a Navy pilot with more than 5,000 hours of flight and crew time on surveillance and intelligence missions worldwide and as a technology analyst on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations. He has also been awarded an honorary doctorate in Humanities by American Intercontinental University for his work in community improvement.
Guillermo Mazier is the Director Strategic Accounts for Atlas Advertising, niche economic development marketing and technology firm that helps economic developers effectively reach site selection and prospect audiences while generating the greatest gains in economic development recruitment, retention, and investor activity for the lowest cost.
An innate passion for places, culture and economic development has afforded Guillermo the opportunity to traverse the globe and view the world through different lenses. With a strong background in international business and development, Guillermo has developed tactical marketing programs, corporate communication strategies and messaging across multiple campaign engagements in various parts of North America and throughout the continental US. His work on marketing engagements for both public and private sector organizations has been recognized by various University organizations, The Ministry of Tourism for the State of Limon, Costa Rica and the American Lung Association in Colorado where he currently serves on the Board of Directors.
Ken Meter is one of the most experienced food system analysts in the U.S., integrating market analysis, business development, systems thinking, and social concerns. As president of Crossroads Resource Center in Minneapolis, Meter holds 41 years experience in inner-city and rural community capacity building. His “Finding Food in Farm Country” studies have promoted local food networks in 85 regions in 30 states and one Canadian province. As coordinator of public process for the City of Minneapolis Sustainability Initiative, he guided over 85 residents in creating a 50-year vision for the city including sustainability measures. He served as an advisor for the USDA Community Food Projects including managing the proposal review panel, and serves as a contributing editor to the Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development. He is convenor and co-chair of the Community Economic Development Committee for the former Community Food Security Coalition. Meter taught economics at the University of Minnesota, and at the Harvard Kennedy School.
With over 30 years of extensive take-to-market experience in fast-paced industries, including tourism (Wardair, Canadian Airlines, Delta Hotels) and telecommunications (TELUS), Mary Moran began her present role as VP, Marketing & Communications with Calgary Economic Development in 2010.
She has a focus on leading teams in the development of strategic marketing plans that result in increasing market share, strengthening stakeholder relations and building brand equity. With experience across private, public and non-profit sectors, Mary holds an expertise in take-to-market initiatives for measurable results. Mary holds an MBA program from Royal Roads University.
In her first five months at Calgary Economic Development, she has led the creation of a national marketing campaign under the brand of “Calgary. Be Part of the Energy” focusing on talent and business attraction into Calgary. The initial phase of this campaign (June 2011-April 2012) held 7 promotional events targeting key markets in Calgary, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa and Halifax. Since its debut, this campaign has received both gold and platinum recognition from the 2011 MarCom awards.
Outside of her work, her commitment to child and youth well-being and development is seen in her dedication to the Ronald McDonald House Southern Alberta, Merit Scholarship program, Calgary Police Foundation and YouthLink. Mary has been volunteering with the Ronald McDonald house for 12 years, and is a past President of the Board. One of her objectives has been bringing the first Ronald McDonald Care Mobile (mobile medical unit and team) to Canada to help medically underserved children in East Calgary.
She is an active member of the Marketing Partnership Council with Bissett School of Business at Mount Royal University.
Jane Muir spent the first decade of her career in the private sector and the past 20+ years in leadership roles in technology transfer at the University of Florida. In addition to her current role as Director of the Florida Innovation Hub at UF, she is also the Associate Director in the technology licensing office. She also serves as Director of UF Tech Connect. Prior to that, Jane served as Marketing Director for the NASA Southeast Regional Technology Transfer Center in the College of Engineering.
Jane previously served as the Vice President for Professional Development for the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), where she developed and implemented training programs internationally. She currently serves as AUTM's President.
Jane graduated cum laude from Southwest Minnesota State University with a B.S. in Marketing and a B.S. in Business Administration & Management. She has served on the boards of a number of organizations, and has been awarded numerous grants for technology-commercialization programs. Most recently she was the primary author on the $8.2 million grant from the Economic Development Administration to build the Florida Innovation Hub at UF.
Max Musicant is the Founder and Principal of The Musicant Group – a leading edge placemaking firm dedicated to assisting property owners, developers, businesses, communities and governments create new value and solve complex problems by transforming underutilized public spaces and common areas into great places where people want to be.
Max began his career at the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation (GJDC) in Queens, NY. While there, he worked with an early leader of the Bryant Park Corporation to devise and implement placemaking and activation strategies for GJDC, one of the oldest and largest community development corporations in New York City. This included planning and implementing one of the New York City's largest outdoor jazz concerts series , opening the neighborhood's first art gallery/studio, and leading community mediation efforts to revitalize the largest area park.
Since founding The Musicant Group in the Twin Cities he has worked with a wide array of clients to create destination places. In Downtown Minneapolis he worked with the owners of the largest park on Nicollet Mall to more than triple its usage and dramatically increase tenant satisfaction. He also led the transformation of a vacant two-block parking lot into a one of a kind European-style marketplace, resulting in the Lyndale Gardens Winter Night Market —a signature community event for Richfield, MN. He is currently managing the creation and programming of the Twin Cities' first piazza, located on Nicollet Mall in the heart of Downtown Minneapolis, which was named one of the six Great Places of 2013 by the Sensible Land Use Coalition.
He currently sits on the boards of the Minneapolis St. Paul Film Society, the Urban Land Institute of MN's Young Leaders Group, the Yale Alumni Association of the Northwest and the Meisel Scholarship Fund of Westminster Presbyterian Church. He received an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management and a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
David Owen is Chief Executive of GFirst UK, the local enterprise partnership for Gloucestershire. GFirst leads on economic development through investment, skills, connectivity, and promotion in a county that boasts the Cotswolds tourism destination alongside world class brands as diverse as Messier-Bugatti-Dowty landing gear and Superdry clothes. David became Chief Executive of GFirst in 2009 and is also currently a non-executive director of the equity fund South West Investment Group and growing training company GEL.
David's career at senior management level stretches back over fifteen years and prior to joining GFirst, he had been Director of Enterprise and Innovation at the University of Gloucestershire, Enterprise Network Manager at the University of Bristol, and Managing Director of a high-growth start-up training company - Liverpool Business Services Ltd. He is also a previous President of the Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce and former Chairman of the South West UK Business Advisory Group.
David has a first degree in business studies and a masters degree in leading change. In his spare time, David enjoys spending time with his young family, watching football (soccer!): supporting Liverpool, climbing mountains, and playing golf very badly.
Mr. Peterson joined the company in December 2008 as executive vice president and chief human resources officer. He is responsible for the company's human resources efforts and provides direction for the company's strategies concerning Best People.
Mr. Peterson has 25 years of experience in human resources. Prior to joining the company, he served as the senior vice president and head of human resources for Select Comfort, Inc., a specialty retailer with 450 store locations, two manufacturing facilities and several distribution hubs staffed by homedelivery personnel. He has also held HR leadership roles with Lifetime Fitness, Inc., Simon Delivers.Com, Diageo/Pillsbury and the Quaker Oats Company.
Mr. Peterson earned his bachelor's degree in liberal arts from Marquette University of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and a master's degree in industrial relations from the University of Minnesota.
Cathy Polasky leads the City of Minneapolis Economic Development Division which includes Business Finance, Business Development and the Employment and Training Program.
Before joining the City in January, 2008, Ms. Polasky launched a nationwide mortgage division, as Senior Vice President for the Bank of America, leading 1000 employees, practiced law with the Popham Haik law firm, Prudential, and Norwest Mortgage, and worked on land use legislation at the Metropolitan Council.
Ms. Polasky presently serves as board president of The Family Partnership, and has previously served on the boards of the Center for Energy and the Environment, WCA Foundation, and Lake Country School.
Ms. Polasky lives in Minneapolis and has a law degree from the University of Minnesota, an MA in Urban Planning from the University of North Carolina and a BA in Geography and Urban Studies from Macalester College.
Laurie R. Preece serves as the Executive Director of Alignment Rockford, an innovative 501(c)(3) collective impact organization established in 2009 to improve public education in Rockford, Illinois.
Alignment Rockford's mission is to coordinate community resources aimed at raising student achievement, improving the health and happiness of children, and advancing the economic and social well-being of the community. The organization designs and pilots tactical solutions to strategic challenges facing Rockford Public Schools.
In fulfilling this important mission, Alignment Rockford engages a diverse array of community organizations and individuals from post-secondary education, government, business, churches and social agencies in a proprietary planning and implementation process. Alignment Rockford's working committees have designed, piloted and expanded initiatives ranging from College & Career Academies in Rockford's high schools to a community information campaign targeted at improving secure infant attachments with their caregivers.
As Alignment Rockford's director, Laurie works with a Governing Board of Directors to lead the implementation of the organization's vision: ensuring that all students graduate from high school with marketable employment skills, enroll in post-secondary education, and are eager to live, work, learn, create, and play in the Rockford region as contributing adults. This charge involves strategic planning, operational oversight, development and fundraising, public communications, and effectively managing relationships with a broad network of stakeholders.
Laurie speaks at regional and national events as an evangelist to communities seeking productive educator-employer partnerships. Prior to leading Alignment Rockford, Laurie served as the volunteer executive director of the Rockford Charter Schools Initiative whose mission was to support the development and authorization of high-quality charter public schools as innovative learning laboratories and academic options for families. The Rockford Public Schools Board of Education authorized three charters in 2009.
As vice president of marketing & business development with Mall of America, Jill Renslow is responsible for working with new and existing tenants to create unique experiences and drive sales and traffic. Bringing over 16 valuable years of development experience with Mall of America, Jill oversees retail marketing, advertising, digital media, group sales, events, amusement park and theater marketing. She also is responsible for forming strategic partnerships and technology advances. Working with various innovative partners, the goal is to develop and integrate emerging technologies into both Mall of America retail and entertainment environments.
Previously, Renslow was director of business development at Mall of America. During her tenure, Renslow oversaw a $25 million rebranding effort of the nation's largest indoor amusement park, Nickelodeon Universe, as well as annual enhancements including new rides, attractions and partnerships. She also managed a $2 million renovation of Theatres at Mall of America, adding 3D technology, DBOX, StarBar and a V.I.P. theater. Improvements to the theater contributed to a 35 percent increase in gross revenue and a 26 percent decrease in expenses.
Renslow holds a B.A. in marketing communications from St. Cloud State University and an M.B.C. from the University of St. Thomas.
Sydney Rogers is the founding Executive Director of Alignment Nashville, a 501©(3) collective impact organization whose purpose is to strategically and systemically align community organizations in support of public education and children's health. Rogers is currently developing Alignment USA, a national network of collective impact organizations that adopt Alignment Principles, Structure, Process, and Technology. Six cities and regions are currently members of the Alignment USA network. She is also a consultant for Ford Next Generation Learning, an initiative of the Ford Motor Company Fund and in that role, is working to scale Alignment nationally through the Ford NGL network.
For thirty years, Sydney served the community at Pellissippi State Community College in Knoxville and Nashville State Community College. During her tenure at Nashville State, she served as a faculty member, department chair, Dean of Technology, Executive Vice President and finally, in 2001, was named Vice President of Community and Economic development. While at the college, she led a 10-year effort to develop collaborative high school and college reform initiatives with support and funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF). She founded an NSF Regional Center for Innovation in Technological Education (CITE), The Case Files project (a national network), South East Consortium for Advanced Technological Education, and Tennessee Exemplary Faculty for Advanced Technological Education (a statewide effort).
Another highlight of her work while at Nashville State was the development of the blueprint for the unique collaborative design for the Tennessee Board of Regents Online Degree Program (RODP), one of the most successful on-line universities in the country. She has served on many local and national non-profit boards and NSF National Visiting Committees, presented numerous speeches, and testified for the U.S. Congress and the National Academies.
The focus of her work in educational transformation has been in developing effective practices for creating new learning environments using authentic experiences, especially in the workplace, and modeling effective methods for engaging businesses in education by using the “How People Learn” framework. She is the co-founder of “Synergy,” an NSF funded bi-annual national series of collaborative meetings to integrate multiple aspects of education reform. “Synergy” events have been held in Nashville, Boston, and Phoenix and have engaged teams of educational reformers from more than 20 states.
Steven Rosenstone has had a distinguished career in higher education beginning with his summa cum laude bachelor's degree from Washington University and his master's degree and Ph.D. degrees from the University of California, Berkeley. He was professor of political science at Yale University until 1986 when he joined the University of Michigan to serve as professor of political science and program director in the Center for Political Studies. He is the author of Who Votes?; Mobilization, Participation, and Democracy in America; Third Parties in America: Citizen Response to Major Party Failure; Hispanic Political Participation; Forecasting Presidential Elections; and numerous scholarly articles on elections, political participation, and higher education. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Recruited to the University of Minnesota in 1996 to serve as dean of the College of Liberal Arts, Rosenstone earned a reputation as a visionary and effective leader. In recognition of his service to the University of Minnesota, he was awarded the McKnight Presidential Leadership Chair in 2004 and was promoted to Vice President for Scholarly and Cultural Affairs in 2007.
Named chancellor of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities in February 2011 by the Board of Trustees, Rosenstone began his term in August 2011. As chancellor, Rosenstone is responsible for leading the seven state universities and 24 community and technical colleges that serve more than 420,000 students in 47 communities across the state.
Chancellor Rosenstone has led the development and implementation of MnSCU's new strategic framework to enhance the role that Minnesota State Colleges and Universities play in growing Minnesota' s economy by:
1. Ensuring access to an extraordinary education for all Minnesotans
Rosenstone serves on the Governor's Workforce Development Council, the Minnesota P-20 Education Partnership, the Midwestern Higher Education Compact, the Itasca Project, the Business Partnership, and the governing boards for Minnesota Compass and Generation Next.
Della Rucker is the author of The Local Economy Revolution: What's Changed and How You Can Help. She is Principal of the Wise Economy Workshop, a consulting firm that focuses on economic revitalization planning and public engagement. She is also the Managing Editor of Engaging Cities, an online magazine focused on the intersection of internet technologies and public involvement in community and government life.
Della has spent over 20 years providing economic development planning, downtown revitalization strategies, fiscal impact analysis, public engagement and other services throughout the United States. She is one of less than 20 people in the United States who carry industry-standard certifications in both planning (AICP) and economic development (CEcD).
A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Della holds a Masters in Community Planning with a concentration in economic development from the University of Cincinnati and a Bachelor of Science in Education from Northwestern University. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Myles Shaver is Professor of Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship at the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota. He has received numerous teaching awards for MBA and executive education classes on Corporate Strategy, Multinational Business Management, and Corporate Responsibility; and Ph.D. classes on strategy and international business research. Myles' research interests revolve around corporate strategy choices and their impact on performance. In particular, his research focuses on the management and economics of international expansion as well as corporate expansion through diversification and mergers and acquisitions. Myles' work has been published in several leading academic publications and he has presented his research at numerous universities and conferences around the world. Myles is an Associate Editor of the Global Strategy Journal and Management Science and is on the Editorial Boards of the Strategic Management Journal, Organization Science, Strategic Organization, and the Journal of International Business Education.
Myles makes frequent media appearances to discuss topical business issues and was awarded the Ross School of Business (University of Michigan) Distinguished PhD Alumni Award in 2010. Poets and Quants included Myles in their profile of the "World's 50 Best Business School Professors."
Katie Clark Sieben was appointed DEED Commissioner in October 2012. Prior to that, she served as executive director of the Minnesota Trade Office (MTO). MTO promotes the creation and retention of jobs and economic prosperity of the State by assisting Minnesota companies to export manufactured goods and services and attract foreign direct investment. As executive director, Katie was responsible for managing the overall strategic direction of the MTO which includes promoting the State of Minnesota and its companies in the global marketplace, introducing Minnesota companies to foreign buyers and investors, building diplomatic relationships with international delegations and managing a staff of international trade representatives.
Katie brings years of experience in business development and recruitment in the private sector, including with one of Minnesota's largest corporations, Target Corporation. She has managed large-scale, multi-million dollar operations; built strategic partnerships at the highest levels of business and philanthropy; and created and implemented nationwide marketing campaigns. In addition to working for Target Corporation, Katie served as the director of community relations for a startup wind energy developer, National Wind, and as finance director for Mark Dayton for a Better Minnesota.
She serves on the board of SIDO, the State International Development Organization. She also serves on the advisory boards for the University of Minnesota's Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER), the University of Minnesota Carlson School Global Institute, and the Minnesota Department of Education Global Competencies Advisory Board.
Katie graduated from the University of Minnesota and was a recipient of the 2012 MSP Business Journal's "Forty Under 40" Award.
Snorton is a nationally recognized small business and economic development expert with a proven record for “results.” In 2008, Henry left his post as the Vice President of Business Development at the Christian County Chamber of Commerce to start Mission Vision Partner (MVP), a practitioner-based full service economic development consulting firm. MVP works throughout the US delivering “big results and big impact for the smalls” in three areas: 1) economic development, 2) small business & entrepreneurial development and 3) grants and application development. MVP's niche is assisting the smalls, distressed and underserved communities and corporate programs and projects to grow and improve economically first, socially second.
MVP subcontracts with organizations such as Minority Economic Development Initiative of Western Kentucky, Inc. (MEDI) to fully manage its strategy implementation, loan and grant funds administration, servicing and reporting and technical and financial assistance delivery. In result, MVP's leadership produced 332 new or retained jobs and $1.83 Million in capital investment through small business and entrepreneurial development, measuring more than $8 Million in economic output.
MVP is also an approved grant reviewer for Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Funds. And, serves US Army troops at Fort Campbell, Kentucky by working in partnership with the Small Business Administration (SBA) and Syracuse University's Institute for Veterans & Military Families as a presenter for the nationally known Operation Boots to Business, From Service to Startup course.
Snorton was also appointed by Kentucky Governors, Beshear and Fletcher to serve on the Governor's Minority Employment, Business Affairs & Economic Development Council. This Council initiated Kentucky's new Ethnic Minority Business Small Purchase policy, online small and minority business database and tracking system, Minority & Women-owned Business Entity Certification Program and reciprocity agreement with Indiana's Minority Business Entity (MBE) Certification Program.
Snorton is also a serial entrepreneur and Certified CDBG Administrator. He earned his MPA and Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Tennessee State University's Institute of Government and Bachelors degree in Economics from Kentucky State University.
Snorton has attained Kentucky's highest civilian honor by being named a Kentucky Colonel. He has been recognized as the Community Leader of the Year and received the Excellence in Community Development Work National Team Award from the National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals (NACDEP) in 2011. He has also received the Mark Your Mark Award from the Mayor of Hopkinsville and Citation from Kentucky House of Representatives in 2008 and National Planning Project Award from American Planning Association in 2000.
William Sproull is President and CEO of the Richardson Chamber of Commerce (RCC), Metroplex Technology Business Council (MTBC) and the Richardson Economic Development Partnership (REDP). This unique and complex set of organizations he runs has two separate Board of Directors and a City Council to whom he reports.
He has led the revitalization of Richardson's telecom based economy through a focus on industry and technology diversification. He built the MTBC into the state of Texas's largest trade association for technology companies. He led the RCC in 2010 through the rigorous US Chamber Accreditation program successfully, earning the highest 5 Star rating conferred by the US Chamber for accreditation. Sproull and his REDP team are credited with bringing two catalyst economic development projects to Richardson: a 3,000 employee Bank of America operation in 2004, and a $3 billion Texas Instruments semiconductor factory in 2003.
In 2005, he helped lead a statewide coalition that got legislation passed in Texas to create the Texas Emerging Technology Fund, a half-billion investment fund. Governor Rick Perry of Texas has appointed him to three consecutive two-year terms on the Fund's Advisory Committee, and appointed him as Chairman in 2010.
Previously he held senior economic development positions at the Greater Dallas Chamber, the McKinney Economic Development Corporation and at the EDC of Kansas City, Missouri. Sproull is a graduate of Baylor University, where he received a BA degree with a double major in Economics and Political Science.
Sproull is the Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of the International Economic Development Council, and serves on the Board of Directors of the University of Texas at Dallas, the North Texas Regional Center for Innovation & Commercialization, the North Texas Commission, and the Technology Councils of North America.
Sproull's economic development accomplishments were recognized by the editors of Site Selection magazine when they selected the $3 billion Texas Instruments project as the Top Development Deal nationally of 2003; his economic development teams have been selected three times by Site Selection as one of the top 10 development groups in the U.S. in 1994, 1997 and 2004. He is a two-time recipient of the American Economic Development Council's “Best of Class” marketing award. In 2010, the International Economic Development Council designated him with the distinction of being a Fellow Member.
The Metroplex Technology Business Council inducted Sproull as the inaugural member of their Hall of Fame in 2010 by declaring him a Tech Titan.
Michael J. Taylor is senior vice president, West Territory Executive, for PNC Bank. He is responsible for community and economic development activities for Northern Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri and Wisconsin. Prior to this he was the president and executive director of the National City Community Development Corporation, the first community development corporation founded by a financial services company. The Community Development Corporation invested more than $1.5 billion in revitalizing neighborhoods.
Mr. Taylor has experience in both private and public sector community and economic development, as well as twenty-five years of banking experience. He has held the position of senior vice president and executive director of Michigan Multi-Cities Community Development Association. He has served as community development specialist for the National City CDC, and commercial/community development manager for National City Bank – Southeast Michigan. His responsibilities included expanding the CDC investment and loan portfolio in Illinois and Indiana, and coordinating the corporation's commercial community development lending activities for the Southeast Michigan Region. He directed bank commercial loan activities in the Detroit Empowerment Zone and other targeted markets, and functioned as product manager for the Initiative Small Business Loan Product. From 1986 to 1990, he served as executive director for the Saginaw Economic Development Corporation in Saginaw, Michigan.
Michael Taylor is a graduate of Central Michigan University with a bachelor's degree in Business Administration and a master's degree in Administration. He is also a graduate of Robert M. Perry School of Banking. During his career, he has received numerous awards and recognition for outstanding contributions and service to the community.
Marty Vanags became Executive Director of the Indy Partnership in February 2013. Vanags leads a group of professional economic development staff whose mission is to market and promote the nine-county Indianapolis region as a place to invest and grow business. The Indy Partnership is a business unit of the Indy Chamber.
Vanags is a graduate of Illinois State University and Northern Illinois University (MPA) and has over 25 years of experience in community and economic development, private commercial real estate development and business management. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). He has served as Chairman of the Illinois Development Council, Chair of International Economic Development Council Public Policy Advisory Committee, and member of the same organization's Economic Development Research Partners (EDRP). He is an active alumnus of Illinois State University serving on their Alumni Board, and the Board of Advisors for the Means Center for Entrepreneurship at ISU's College of Business. Vanags also is a co-founder and creator of the Center for Emerging Entrepreneurs, a business incubation and development program at Illinois State University.
He is a co-founder and on the Board of the @Midwest Social Media Conference, and speaks and provides seminars on social media and its impact on economic development and non-profits. Vanags has spoken at various venues and conferences on topics ranging from communication, leadership, change management, and data-use in economic development and community development. Under Vanags' leadership, the Bloomington Normal EDC received numerous accolades and awards for marketing, communication and economic development best practices.
Ellen Watters has a broad background in community and organizational development, civic engagement and public policy. She launched her own consulting firm in 2014 after being part of Civic Source, a two-person consulting firm for seven years.
Ellen's recent portfolio of work includes serving as co-project manager for the Central Corridor Anchor Partnership, a collaborative of 13 higher education and healthcare institutions in Minneapolis-St. Paul working together to create economic opportunity and neighborhood stability in a targeted geography. She also assisted in the project management of the Jobs Central/Corridors 2 Careers initiative through Ramsey County. And for 13 years she has co-created and managed the InterCity Leadership Visit, a study mission for elected officials, business and civic leaders to learn best practices by visiting another region of the U.S.
For seven years she was a principal and co-founder of the consulting firm, Civic Source, where she concentrated on community development collaboratives and community leadership programs. This experience includes extensive work helping cross-sector partnerships align around common goals and develop implementation strategies. She also has worked with organizations to do strategic planning with board and staff and to develop more effective boards.
Prior to Civic Source, Ellen served as Senior Vice President of Economic Development for the Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce. Her responsibilities included developing macro policies to attract and retain investment and working to ensure a climate conducive to growth. Before joining the Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce in 2002, Ellen served as President of the Midway Chamber of Commerce for nearly six years. Her earlier career was primarily in communications and fundraising.
Ellen serves as Chair of the Board of Directors of Northern Clay Center, Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Trustees of Episcopal Homes of Minnesota and on the board of directors of the High Winds Fund at Macalester College. Ellen has a BA in Economics and Business from Macalester College.
Tim Welsh has served some of the nation's leading life insurers, P&C insurers, banks and retailers on issues of strategy, organization and operations.
Additionally, Tim is active in the Minneapolis-St. Paul community. He helped create the Itasca Project—a coalition of more than 40 CEOs, the governor, and other civic leaders—that is helping to drive development initiatives in the region. He also supported the Mayor of Minneapolis in a project to transform the city's economic development activities. He serves on the Board of the United Way, as well as St. Paul Academy and the Summit School.
Gene Winstead was elected to his first term as Mayor of Bloomington, Minnesota on November 2, 1999, and is now serving in his fourth term as Mayor. He's been a member of the Bloomington City Council since his appointment in 1995. In addition to his work on the City Council, Mayor Winstead is currently serving on Bloomington's Port Authority, Bloomington United for Youth, and the Bloomington Convention and Visitors Bureau. He is also a board member of the American Red Cross Blood Services Division and is on the Senior Community Services Board. He is a past member of the City's Planning Commission, serving as its Chairperson through the development of the Mall of America, and has served on several other community boards and foundations including the Bloomington Crime Prevention Association (BCPA), Bloomington Housing and Redevelopment Authority, and the Bloomington Chamber of Commerce.
Mayor Winstead has been a resident of Bloomington since 1975 and is married with three grown daughters and seven grandchildren. He retired as Vice President of Operations from Lieberman Companies in Bloomington in August 2004 after 34 years and now keeps busy as a partner of Ike's Food & Cocktails in downtown Minneapolis and at their newest location at the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport.
Kim's primary responsibility at ICIC is defining and implementing a research agenda that explores economic development issues in U.S. inner cities. She also directs the advisory services practice that works with clients across the nation to apply ICIC research findings. ICIC has advised over 50 cities on economic development since its inception in 1994. The organization is a leading authority on urban economies, especially distressed urban cores, and continues to build a library of insights and strategies for leaders in urban economic development. ICIC's research continues to push the economic development field forward. Kim is currently directing a portfolio of action-oriented research that includes: a comprehensive analysis of economic trends in the nation's inner cities; expanding the role and definition of anchor institutions; including developing a systematic approach to measuring shared value; exploring new investment tools for cities that will deliver sustained economic growth; and city initiatives that support high-growth urban businesses.
Kim has over 15-years of experience researching and advising on economic development issues. She has published dozens of academic and professional articles and is co-editor of the book Revitalizing American Cities (2013), which explores the historical, regional, and political factors that have allowed some industrial cities to regain their footing in a changing economy. According to Manny Diaz, the former Mayor of Miami and past President of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the book should be “required reading for anyone working to stabilize and strengthen America's industrial cities.”
Kim holds a Ph.D. in Applied Economics from the University of Minnesota, where her research focused on regional and community economic development. Kim has held several academic positions, as a Visiting Scholar at the College of William and Mary, a professor at the University of Wisconsin—Madison and a professor at the University of Kentucky. Most recently, Kim was Vice President and Community Development Officer for the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, VA. Before joining the Fed, she was a research director and business consultant with the Corporate Executive Board, Business Leadership Forum, in Washington, D.C.