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Loudoun County, Virginia

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Director of Economic Development

The Position

Loudoun County, VA, is seeking an accomplished, experienced economic development leader for the position of Director of Economic Development. Under the direction of the County Administrator, the Director of Economic Development is responsible for the County’s overall economic development strategies for attracting new business, reinvestment, job creation, retention of existing businesses and rural economic development. The Director of Economic Development oversees the Department with the mission to “provide excellent customer-focused economic development services to attract, grow and retain targeted businesses and to promote entrepreneurism, in order to diversify and strengthen Loudoun’s economy.”  The Director develops and manages the Department’s budget and operational work plans, ensuring that both reflect the Board of Supervisors’ strategic plan, organizational goals, and priorities.  He/she also keeps the County Administrator informed of all critical and ongoing economic development issues.

The Director of Economic Development oversees the Department’s $3 million FY 2014 budget and a staff of nearly 22 employees. The Department conducts business and industry research, markets the County and promotes retention and expansion of Loudoun County businesses. The Director is the face of economic development for the County and regularly meets with representatives from prospective commercial businesses from across the region, the country, and the world. In 2012, the Economic Development Department took more than 400 meetings with organizations exploring location or expansion in Loudoun County, hailing from a diversity of locations including New York City, Boston, San Francisco, Austin, as well as France, Germany, South Korea and England.

The Director has a close working relationship with elected officials at all levels of government, foremost of which are the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors. The Department works closely with a number of county and regional economic development groups, including:

  • Loudoun County Economic Development Commission  – a public/private partnership responsible for promoting economic development in the County
  • Visit Loudoun – the non-profit organization promoting tourism in Loudoun County
  • Economic Development Authority, which offers financing for eligible groups through tax exempt revenue bonds and works with the County in offering cash incentives to businesses
  • Mason Enterprise Center – a small business incubator, a partnership of George Mason University, Loudoun County Economic Development, Town of Leesburg, and the Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce
  • Northern Virginia Regional Commission – a regional council of fourteen member governments in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C.
  • Virginia Economic Development Partnership
  • Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority

Requirements and Preferred Qualifications

Requirements include a Bachelor’s degree and 10 years of experience in the economic development field, prior supervisory experience, prior experience in a sophisticated organization, and prior experience working with elected officials at all levels of government. A Master’s degree in economic development, planning, or business or public administration and a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) certification are preferred.

The Ideal Candidate

The ideal Director of Economic Development will bring creativity, a strategic focus, and demonstrated results in business retention and attraction for a sophisticated government. The ideal candidate will be a seasoned leader who has been the face of economic development in the business community and has managed large projects involving multiple levels of the government.   The candidate will be competent and knowledgeable in information and communication technology, and will understand the impact of rail or transit on a jurisdiction’s growth and development.  He/she will work well with other departments to achieve county-wide goals, clearly define the Department’s role and support of those goals, and partner with other organizations that have a vested interest in the County’s business health and long-term financial sustainability.  The next Director will be able to navigate in a progressive and fast-paced organization, work closely to maximize the effectiveness of departmental staff, and propel the Department further in achieving its goals.  The ideal candidate will be politically astute, inspiring, persuasive, and an excellent communicator.  The next Director will be equally comfortable working with federal, state, and county elected officials, CEOs of large companies, small business owners, and rural business leaders.  He/she will provide a clear vision for the Department as a whole, help employees understand how their work contributes to those goals, foster a cohesive staff team and hold staff accountable for progress on goals.  The ideal candidate will be flexible, performance driven and able to build and foster strong relationships.

The Community

Loudoun County, VA, “DC’s Technology Corridor,” is an innovative, globally competitive community known for its favorable business environment, exceptional quality of life, and strong sense of community. Located in northern Virginia, approximately 45 minutes northwest of Washington, D.C., Loudoun County is a growing and thriving community of more than 336,000 residents. Loudoun has been one of the fastest growing communities of its size for the last decade.  The County’s eastern area is mainly suburban in character while its western area is more rural, including small towns, horse farms, and more than 160,000 acres of well-preserved open space. The county includes Dulles International Airport in the southern part of the county, a major facility serving nearly 30 million passengers every year. Additionally, the Washington D.C. Metro is currently expanding into Loudoun County with the extension of the Silver Line scheduled for completion in 2018 that will allow residents to travel conveniently into Washington, D.C.  Ranked by Forbes Magazine as the wealthiest county in the United States in 2012, Loudoun County is experiencing an exciting period for economic development.

Loudoun County’s Economic Development has a proven track record of success.  The County has a booming information and communications technology (ICT) industry. Data centers occupy more than 4.3 million square feet of office space and up to 70% of the world’s internet traffic can pass through the County on a daily basis. Major employers include AOL, MC Dean, the Orbital Sciences Corporation, Raytheon, United Airlines, and Verizon, each employing more than 1,000 people each in the County. In addition to ICT industry jobs, Loudoun County also has a significant number of federal government contracting jobs, made possible by the County’s convenient location in the Washington D.C. metro area. CNN Money reported that for the second year in a row in 2012, Loudoun County was the number one county for job growth in the United States. Also in 2012, Loudoun County landed 56 “prospects”—businesses which either relocated or expanded in Loudoun.

Loudoun County is also home to more than 1,400 farms, occupying more than 142,000 acres of land in the County’s western region. The County’s Rural Business Development Division focuses primarily on promoting agricultural products and assists in the development of new agricultural businesses. The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors approved the Rural Economy Business Development Strategy in 2013, a plan that aims to double the growth of the agricultural business sector by 2023. Loudoun County is also home to 35 wineries and was number one in grape production in Virginia last year.

Compensation

The expected hiring salary range is $91,000 to $175,000, with an excellent benefit package. Please apply by November 18, 2013.

How to Apply

Apply Online

You can apply online right here, just click the button to get started. Application deadline: November 18, 2013.

Questions

Questions should be directed to Catherine Tuck Parrish at ctuckparrish@thenovakconsultinggroup.com or by telephone to (240) 832-1778 .

Download the full brochure here.