Submitted by Thurston Economic Development Council
The Thurston Economic Development Council (EDC) is proud to announce that their Rural Program Manager, George Sharp, received the Washington Economic Development Association’s Economic Development Advocate of the Year Award at their recent Winter Conference held in Olympia.
Sharp has worked for the EDC since February 2016 and in addition to other roles, Sharp is the EDC’s Rural Program Manager. As Rural Program Manager, he oversees the South Thurston Economic Development Initiative serving the communities of Bucoda, Grand Mound, Rainier, Rochester, Tenino and Yelm and the Shop South Local Buy Local Program.
“George’s efforts have led to a demonstrably improved economy in the County’s southern communities through his STEDI leadership. A consortium focused on long-range economic and community development in the rural areas of Thurston County, STEDI is committed to creating a dynamic and sustainable economy that supports the values of the people who live and work throughout Thurston County and George works tirelessly to further STEDI goals,” said John Millard, City of Tenino Clerk-Treasurer.
“George is a key member of our EDC team and his passion for helping communities, organizations and small businesses succeed is unmatched in Washington State if not the country,” said Michael Cade, Executive Director of the EDC.
The 2019 WEDA Economic Development Award Winners included:
EMERGING PROFESSIONAL IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Stephen McFadden, Adams County Economic Development Director
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ADVOCATE OF THE YEAR
George Sharp, Thurston Economic Development Council Rural Program Manager
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PROJECT OF THE YEAR – BUSINESS RECRUITMENT
Go To My Apartment (GTMA)
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PROJECT OF THE YEAR – BUSINESS RETENTION/EXPANSION
INNOVATION IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AWARD
Washington Certified Creative Districts Program
Additional award nominees include:
- AIM Aerospace – Economic Development Board for Tacoma-Pierce County
- Main Street Day – Columbia River Economic Development Council
- WellHaven Expansion – Columbia River Economic Development Council
- Pierce County is “open to business” campaign – Pierce County
- Emerald Coast Opportunity Zone Project
- James Hardie Building Products – Pierce County Economic Development
- BuyLocalAuburn.com – City of Auburn
- New Cold – Economic Development Board for Tacoma-Pierce County
WEDA is a state-wide, non-profit association of private businesses, economic development councils, ports, governments, and others committed to enhancing the state’s climate for economic development. WEDA’s mission is to serve as the statewide professional association committed to the development of economic and employment opportunities in our state. This requires a strong presence in state legislative and regulatory arenas. WEDA is recognized among decision-makers in Washington State as a united voice for economic development.
About the Thurston Economic Development Council
The Thurston Economic Development Council has been supporting a strong economy in Thurston County since 1982 with a mission to create a dynamic and sustainable economy that supports the values of the people who live and work in Thurston County. At the foundation of the work we do are three main principles: recruit, retain, and expand.