The Greater Peoria Economic Development Council (GPEDC) is seeking a dynamic individual to serve as its next Director of Rural Outreach and Development. This program manager will take a proactive approach in establishing and maintaining relationships with rural partners. Rural communities traditionally lack the adequate resources and staff to keep up to date with various funding and grant opportunities, which leaves them feeling disconnected from the region at large. The primary goal of the Director of Rural Outreach and Development is to advocate for and partner with rural communities within the five-county region served by the GPEDC in order to connect our rural partners with the Greater Peoria region.
The Director of Rural Outreach and Development leads the organization’s outreach efforts to the region’s rural and small communities to connect them to community and economic development resources and programs at the GPEDC and other regional, state, and federal partners; serves as the lead for community and economic development projects outside the region’s urbanized areas that involve the GPEDC as a partner; and leads efforts to improve broadband connectivity in rural areas.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- Proactively build relationships with small and rural community leaders and connect them with local, state, and federal resources.
- Connect rural and small communities with appropriate GPEDC staff, data tools, programs, strategy teams, working groups, and opportunities to support their development projects.
- Organize opportunities for collaboration, information sharing, and professional development for small and rural community partners and businesses
- Provide basic community and economic data and analysis for small and rural investor communities lacking local economic development staff.
- Represent GPEDC in regional collaborations and initiatives related to the agriculture industry and food systems development.
- Organize and spearhead efforts to improve accessibility and affordability of broadband, particularly in the region’s underserved rural areas.
- Provide direction and supervision to GPEDC’s American Connection Corps fellow.
- Offer technical assistance to municipalities, businesses, and other stakeholders concerning resources.
- Track and report community engagement and development activities to GPEDC board
- Bachelor’s degree from an appropriately accredited four-year college or university is preferred.
- Prior experience in the field of economic development, community development, or a field related to stated responsibilities
- Knowledge of economic development techniques and methods, as well as the ability to manage and maintain complex and dynamic business and political relationships.
- Familiarity with small and rural community economic development techniques.
- Ability to multi-task and manage a variety of responsibilities.
- Ability to build and maintain relationships, as well as organize and host regular meetings with various stakeholder groups and economic development partners.
- Superb oral and written skills to communicate information and ideas.
- Ability to read, analyze, and interpret complex information.
- Proficiency in writing reports and business correspondence.
- Ability to effectively present information in a customized format and respond to questions from groups of clients, investors, media, and the general public both orally and in writing.
- Capable of recognizing, defining, and solving problems.
- Taking initiative to drive successful programmatic outcomes.
- Aptitude for collecting data, establishing facts, and drawing valid conclusions.
- Knowledge of relevant communication, marketing, and data tools.
Please send a cover letter, resume and three references (at least two professional references) to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications will be reviewed as they are received and the position is open until filled. The position is open immediately and GPEDC is seeking to fill this important part of its team with a dynamic, qualified individual as soon as possible.
Greater Peoria EDC is an equal opportunity employer.