Arizona Association for Economic Development Hosts Past-Presidents Event

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Arizona Association for Economic Development Hosts Past-Presidents Event

On November, 3rd, The Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) celebrated its excellence in economic development education with an open house including its Past Presidents, AAED’s current leadership, AAED’s Certified Economic Developers (CEcD) and Arizona Economic Development Professionals (AZED Pro). Arizona Governor Doug Ducey made an appearance with a video message recognizing AAED’s leadership in economic development educational excellence in Arizona.

AAED annually presents formal education programs aimed at ensuring Arizona’s economic development professionals receive the most current and relevant training in topics pertaining to the practice of economic development in Arizona. Founded in 1974, started off as the Arizona Association for Industrial Development (AAID). Its early mission was focused on expanding the industrial and economic base of Arizona and predates the formation of the Arizona Department of Commerce (now the Arizona Commerce Authority) in 1985. As state and regional economic development groups began to form in the late ‘80’s/early ‘90’s, AAID became AAED, now serving as “Arizona’s unified voice advocating for responsible economic development through an effective program of professional education, advocacy, and collaboration.”

Over the last several years, AAED has made great strides in support of its mission. Highlights have included an organization wide re-branding, development of a formal strategic plan, investment in having a voice at the Legislature, and the creation of a professional development program focused on AZ specific issues. AAED has also provided increased opportunities for people across the state to have a seat at the table and engage in the work of the association.

Jennifer Graves
Jennifer Graves

Jennifer Graves, CEcD, manager of the Gilbert Office of Economic Development and president of the Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED), emceed an AAED past-presidents celebration in recognition of continuing education in the economic development industry.  She provided a special recognition of the fifth anniversary of the Economic Development Academy of Arizona and its first 20 graduates.

Jeff Finkle and Greg Tilque
Jeff Finkle and Greg Tilque

Jeff Finkle, CEcD, president of the International Economic Development Council, and Greg Tilque, CEcD, senior economic development manager for the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, review the AAED’s Academic Excellence Honor Wall recognizing Arizona economic developers who have earned their Certified Economic Developer designations and AZED Pro certificates.

Lori Gary
Lori Gary

Lori Gary, CEcD, economic development project manager for the city of Mesa, was among the past-presidents of the Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) who attended a celebration in recognition of continuing education in the economic development industry.

Harold Stewart
Harold Stewart

Harold Stewart, CEcD, interim economic development director for the city of Maricopa, was among those who attended an Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) past-presidents celebration in recognition of continuing education in the economic development industry.

Brian Dalke
Brian Dalke

Brian Dalke, CEcD, city manager for the city of Goodyear, was among the past-presidents of the Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) who attended a celebration in recognition of continuing education in the economic development industry.

E'lan Vallender
E’lan Vallender

E’lan Vallender, AZED Pro, economic development specialist for the city of Apache Junction, was honored with his name being added to the Academic Excellence Wall during an Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) past-presidents celebration in recognition of continuing education in the economic development industry.

For more information on AAED, visit www.aaed.com or call (602) 240-2233.

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