Alliance for Economic Development in La Plata County

Alliance for Economic Development in La Plata County

Job Title: Economic Development Director
Reports to: Alliance Board of Directors Salary: $80,000 – $90,000 based on experience
Revision Date: January 2019
Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA): Exempt

General Purpose:
Responsible for developing and implementing strategies to improve the economic strength within La Plata County through business development; job creation; retention and expansion of existing businesses; recruitment of new businesses; coordinating and expediting the land use approval process; communication and collaboration with local governments (specifically La Plata County, the Town of Bayfield, the City of Durango and the Town of Ignacio), state agencies, federal agencies, and other regional economic development agencies; provide support and advice to various public and private sector organizations; unify and simplify the economic development efforts within the county; and improve the public’s awareness of the importance of economic development activities.

Supervision Received and Exercised:

The Economic Development Director receives general direction from the Alliance Board of Directors within a framework of broad policies and procedures and established organizational values and processes. May provide direct supervision to administrative staff or interns; and work instruction to volunteers on a project basis.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
The statements below are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by the individual assigned to this position. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required of personnel. The position description is subject to change by the Alliance Board as the needs of the county and requirements of the position change.

➢ Designs, develops, and implements business recruitment, retention, and expansion programs
➢ Plans, organizes, coordinates and administers comprehensive programs aimed at encouraging viable economic development for the La Plata county area.
➢ Work with the Alliance Board in maintaining and increasing Alliance funding by communicating the value of the Alliance to investors/donors and local businesses.
➢ Develops and implements economic development initiatives for new and existing businesses, including promoting business retention and redevelopment.
➢ Lead and coordinate business recruitment efforts within the county.
➢ Reviews and provide input on policies related to the underlying strength of the local economy.
➢ Communicates the elements of the local economic development strategy to diverse community groups and builds consensus for this strategy.
➢ Works with marketing professionals to develop informational and marketing brochures and other materials describing the community; as well as, maintain the Alliance’s website with comprehensive information and resources.
➢ Contacts businesses interested in locating to the community and initiates recruitment efforts to attract businesses that meet the local job creation goals.
➢ Assists businesses by facilitating and expediting local permit processes and approvals.
➢ Analyzes job training needs of current and prospective employers and coordinates this effort with Small Business Development Center, Pueblo Community College SW, Fort Lewis College, Durango 9-R School District, San Juan College, and other job-training organizations.
➢ Attends meetings, workshops, conferences and seminars on economic development; serves as an advocate for businesses within the La Plata county area.
➢ Serve as the Alliance liaison and staff representative to the Towns of Bayfield and Ignacio, City of Durango, and La Plata County.
➢ Coordinate and track the potential impact of legislative proposals and programs; as well as their effect on economic development in the La Plata county area.
➢ Participate in and/or conducts meetings with developers, existing businesses, and other government agencies. Maintain open lines of communication with businesses, public agencies, non-profits, peers, co-workers, and the public.
➢ Prepare funding requests from funding partners and grant opportunities.
➢ Manage Alliance budget according to sound business principles and practices.
➢ Establishes and maintains contact with other city, town, county, regional and statewide economic development organizations, and may serve as team leader on specific projects related to economic development.
➢ Analyzes legislation pertaining to economic development; provide input regarding the policy and procedural changes.
➢ Prepares reports, graphic representations and statistical summaries on issues related to economic development and makes presentations to a variety of public and private organizations, business and community organizations, and other stakeholders regarding these issues.
➢ Serves as a liaison, communicates, and maintain a cohesive relationship by enhancing positive public relations with the membership, media, employers, business community, and governments. Will also communicate and meet with local officials on a regular basis in an effort to represent La Plata County’s economic development interests.
➢ Performs other duties and responsibilities as directed by the Alliance Board.


Knowledge of:

➢ Principles and practices of economic development and business recruitment, retention and expansion.
➢ Federal, state and local programs and opportunities to cooperatively develop and enhance the economic strength of the region.
➢ Planning and community development issues and practices related to economic and job development.
➢ Applicable laws, regulations, policy and procedures.
➢ Financing trends, practices, and resources in economic development.
➢ Principles and practices of business recruitment, retention, and expansion.
➢ Principles, practices, and resources for job creation, training and retention
➢ Principles and practices of drafting agreements, negotiation of contracts and supervision of contractors.
➢ Principles and practices of urban planning and community development, including community issues related to economic development.
➢ Business and administrative computer applications related to the work.
➢ Techniques for effectively representing the Alliance in contacts with governmental agencies, community groups and various business, professional, regulatory and legislative organizations.
➢ Techniques for providing a high level of customer service to the public; and city, town and county staff, in person and over the telephone.
➢ Basic program management, budgeting and supervisory techniques.

Education and Experience:

Equivalent to graduation from a four-year college or university with major coursework in business or public administration, economics, planning, economic development, or a closely related field and five years of professional experience in dealing with economic development issues, including three years at a management or administrative level. A Master’s Degree in one of the fields outlined above is preferred. Membership in a related professional organization and designation as a Certified Economic Developer is highly desired.


Must possess (or be able to obtain within 30 days of employment) a valid Colorado driver’s license and a satisfactory driving record.

Working Conditions:

May be required to work some evenings and weekends, in addition to the regularly scheduled shift.

Physical Demands:

Must possess mobility to work in a standard office setting, to use standard office equipment and to move between various office and meeting locations; strength to lift and carry office materials weighing up to ten pounds; vision to read printed materials and a computer screen; and hearing and speech to communicate in person, over the telephone and before groups.

NOTE: This job description is not intended to be all-inclusive. Employee may perform other related duties as established to meet the ongoing needs of the organization.