CTC Economic Development Director Graduates from Academy

June, 2012:  The Board of the Georgia Academy for Economic Development has announced its Columbus-Muscogee graduates from the 2012 Region 8 Multi-Day Training program; Columbus Technical College Director of Economic Development, Deana Beauford, is one of the distinguished graduates. Class participants represented a number of professional and non-professional economic development fields, including elected officials, public servants, business leaders, educators, and social service providers from 16 counties in Southwest Georgia. The Academy provided each of the graduates an opportunity to gain a unique understanding of the complexities of economic and community development on the local, regional, and state levels.

Beauford said the experience was invaluable in allowing her to think outside the box while better understanding the vital role economic development plays in everyday life — in Columbus and beyond.

“It is a win-win situation with economic development providing training while companies get a tax break, Beauford explained. “Taking a stand and making things happen as a leader is one of the most important aspects of being involved in economic development.  Based on information I received, I truly can say that our department at Columbus Technical College has captured it’s purpose of how to serve local communities.”

GAED graduates

CTC Director of Economic Development Deana Beauford (right) joins GAED Board Member Mike Worley (center) and her fellow regional graduates of the 2012 GA Academy for Economic Development. Left to right: Steve Magner/Ft. Benning, Elizabeth Hurst/Uptown Columbus, and Karon Henderson/Georgia Power.

The Academy’s multi-day program, taught one day a month over a four-month period, included training in the basics of economic and community development plus specialized segments on business recruitment and retention, tourism product development, downtown development,  quality planning, redevelopment and other essentials for community success. The curriculum also featured specific leadership skills such as consensus building, ethics in public service, and collaborative leadership. 

Created in 1993 by then-Governor Zell Miller’s Development Council, the Academy assembles a cross section of economic development professionals and resources to provide this training in all 12 service delivery regions in Georgia. Since its inception, the Academy has provided training for thousands of professional and non-professional economic developers around the state, and since 1998 the Academy has been offered annually.

(Information courtesy of the Georgia Academy for Economic Development press release.)