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EDAWN President/CEO Chuck Alvey steps down



EDAWN Board Begins National Search for New Leader

The board of trustees for the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada (EDAWN) announced today that President and CEO Chuck Alvey has tendered his resignation after more than 12 years leading the region’s foremost economic development organization.

Alvey cited having spent more than a decade as president/CEO and a desire to pursue other professional interests, as reasons for stepping down from his post.  Additionally, he said he wanted EDAWN to be in synch with the state’s changes for economic development, with a CEO in place who would be part of the planning and implementation long-term.

According to EDAWN Chairman Russ Romine, the board has asked Alvey to stay on with the organization in his current role until a new CEO is hired, and in order to efficiently complete the transition to a new CEO, and to maintain momentum with existing business development projects, including companies that EDAWN is in the process of relocating and expanding to the area.

The board voted to agree to contract with an executive search firm that has extensive experience conducting national searches for senior executives in such industries as industrial, professional services and economic development.   A search committee is being formed to oversee the search, and will consist of a cross-section of the business community. Terms of the search were not disclosed. The board’s goal is to hire a search firm within two weeks, and have a new CEO in place by the end of summer.

“The EDAWN board takes its responsibility seriously in finding the ideal person to lead economic development in northern Nevada going forward,” said Romine.  “It’s a new day for economic development in Nevada and the new leader needs to have demonstrated economic development experience and results, be skilled in collaboration and regionalization, and have an eye toward innovation.”

During Alvey’s tenure, EDAWN and its partners advanced economic diversification throughout the northern Nevada region.  Over the past decade, 312 companies were assisted in relocating and expanding in the area, creating 12,035 jobs, 16.2 million square feet of new or leased industrial or office space, and $2 billion in economic impact within an eight-country region including Carson, Churchill, Douglas, Lyon, Mineral, Pershing, Storey and Washoe Counties.

Additionally, clean energy technology became a target industry focus for business development and job creation, which has made significant strides, specifically in the area of geothermal as Reno has emerged as a center for geothermal excellence thanks to the international and United States companies that have a presence in Reno.  EDAWN also teamed with the Reno Sparks Chamber to co-fund the Reno-Tahoe Young Professionals Network – the first for the community, and Alvey was instrumental in securing Reno-Tahoe as the host of the International Economic Development Annual Conference in 2009, attracting the nation’s top economic development professionals to the region for a week.

“We appreciate that Chuck has agreed to continue to lead the organization until we complete the executive search.  Because of his commitment to the community, he wants to ensure as smooth a transition in leadership as possible, and assist the EDAWN business development team close as many of the company projects in the pipeline before the end of our fiscal year on June 30,” Romine said.

EDAWN will continue discussions with the Northern Nevada Chamber of Commerce and the Reno Sparks Chamber of Commerce on what are appropriate operational and functional areas for consolidation, according to the plans announced by the three organizations earlier this year.

“I appreciate the board’s support in my decision and timing. My intentions, given my personal plans, had been to remain at EDAWN at least through 2012.  However, given the significant changes at the state level with the Governor’s and Legislative leadership’s proposed recommendations for economic development, and efforts underway to combine efforts with the Chambers, it makes sense for me to accelerate my timeline and allow the organization to quickly recruit a new leader who can be on board and actively involved in all of these exciting changes,” said Alvey.  “It’s important that the organization have a leader who will be a part of those planning discussions, and be around to implement them long-term.”

Alvey is a Certified Economic Developer (CeED).  He is currently serving a third term on the Board of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), the largest network of economic development professionals in the world dedicated to helping economic development professionals create high-quality jobs and develop vibrant communities.

About EDAWN: EDAWN is a private, non-profit corporation founded by community leaders in 1982.  EDAWN works to recruit and expand quality companies that have a positive impact on the quality of life in Greater Reno-Tahoe.  Reno was named the No. 1 Place for Doing Business in America 2005 by Inc. magazine.  For more information, visit www.edawn.org.

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