County of Summit – Director of Community and Economic Development
The County of Summit Director of Community and Economic Development is responsible for overseeing the County’s Department of Community and Economic Development, comprised of the Division of Economic Development, Division of Community Development and Division of Planning and Geographic Information Systems. The Director reports directly to the Chief of Staff of the County Executive and oversees a staff of approximately 20 employees. The Director is responsible for both the development of strategic policies and initiatives, as well as the day-to-day operation of the Department. In overseeing the Department and driving economic development for the County, the Director is required to practically apply his or her knowledge of the economic development system to improve current practices, develop new and innovative programs, and address complex issues facing the County’s residents and businesses.
In overseeing the County’s economic development functions, the Director will be responsible for leading a small, dedicated team of individuals in responding to the needs of existing small, medium and large businesses in Summit County, while also working to attract new businesses to the County. The County’s approach to economic development is highly collaborative, and the County is an active partner, through Elevate Greater Akron, with the Greater Akron Chamber, City of Akron, and the County’s 30 other suburban communities and regional economic development partners such as TeamNEO and JobsOhio. The Director is expected to have knowledge of economic development programs, including but not limited to incentives, tax abatement programs, economic development and project financing programs, site and land development programs and workforce development programs, as well as the capacity to establish and execute strategic plans for economic development. The Director should have the ability to compile and understand project pro-formas and capital financing and how various incentive packages impact and contribute to an overall project. The Director also serves as the Executive Director of the Summit County Transportation Improvement District and also manages Foreign Trade Zone 181 on behalf of participating counties. Other State of Ohio infrastructure programs such as the State Capital Improvement Program and the Local Transportation Improvement Program are administered locally by the Department.
The Director will also oversee the administration of the County’s community development programs, including the Community Development Block Program, HOME Program, Home Weatherization Assistance Program and similar state and federal funding programs. These programs are generally used to support the County’s low-to-moderate income residents, although several aspects of these programs also intersect with the County’s economic development efforts. The Director is expected to either enter the position with a working knowledge of these programs, or be able to quickly attain a working knowledge of these programs. At a minimum, the successful candidate for the position will be generally knowledgeable of these programs and/or will have a general understanding of federal and state audit and compliance requirements as it pertains to the allowable uses of funds from the federal government and State of Ohio.
Lastly, the Director will oversee the County’s Planning and GIS division. This division serves as the staff for the Summit County Planning Commission, and administers certain planning matters for the nine townships in the County. Additionally, the County is increasingly reliant upon a robust GIS backbone, which is critical for operations from public safety, to real property assessing and taxation, and economic development. While the successful candidate for the Director’s position is not expected to have a technical background in planning or GIS, the Director will be required to practically apply these disciplines to develop policies and address sometimes-complicated issues.
Interested parties should submit a confidential resume and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org. Interviews will be conducted throughout the late summer and fall, and it is anticipated that the successful candidate will start employment with the County in late 2020.
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