125 Walnut Street | Indianola, Mississippi 38751
228.458.8393 Res | 228.434.1356 Cell | [email protected]
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT/ CHAMBER EXECUTIVE
Success-driven visionary with 14 years of experience driving dramatic results in economic development
Practiced in revitalizing strategies and staff to meet a wide variety of challenges including those of an economically diversified, rapidly growing county. Skilled in economic analysis and implementing strategies, processes and technologies that position communities to effectively compete in the global marketplace. Adept at working with multiple political subdivisions and facilitating change in a community to support organizational objectives. Strong background in budgeting and management, cross-departmental project management, information technology utilization, human resources development and public speaking. Additional expertise in:
Industrial Recruitment - Retail & Commercial Development - Program Development - Strategic Planning - Team Building - Business Credit Analysis & Finance - Real Estate Finance - Rural Development - Organization Development - Industrial Park Development
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR | 2003 - PRESENT
FLOWER COUNTY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DISTRICT | TOPTER, MS
Challenged to locate growing companies in a stagnant economy and increase visibility and attractiveness of 34,000 population county located in the Mississippi Delta. Directly responsible for functions involving strategic planning and implementation; program development, implementation and coordination; fund-raising; marketing plan development; implementation and coordination of an existing business and industry visitation program; industrial recruiting activities including prospect acquisition; development and coordination of incentive packages, and developing relationships with internal and external economic development allies.
Overhauled entire program to tighten focus, streamline operations and foster an atmosphere of empowerment and accountability. Outsourced selected operations to local providers and Chamber of Commerce to reduce costs, improve effectiveness and sharpen internal focus on development activities. Leveraged extensive database of site selection consultants to raise awareness of county incentives. Prepared numerous targeted direct mail campaigns.
- Quickly acquired 3 manufacturing prospects with 1 having selected the county as their site resulting in $10M investment and 25 new jobs in the first year.
- Revitalized industry visitation program and identified 7 companies with expansion plans resulting in 140 new jobs and $2.5M investment.
- Currently working with a local foundation to establish the B.B. King Blues Museum in Indianola to drive a comprehensive rural tourism program promoting the blues culture that originated in the Mississippi Delta.
- Wrote and received approval for a matching grant to upgrade the District's computer network.
PRESIDENT | 1994 - 2003
BILL COUNTY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DISTRICT/ CHAMBER OF COMMERCE | DURVIS, MS
Recruited by search committee to turnaround failing ED program for 40,000 population county located in the Hattiesburg MSA. Directed functions involving strategic planning and implementation; program development, implementation and coordination; marketing plan development; industrial park acquisition and development; existing business and industry support and industrial recruiting activities including prospect development and development and coordination of incentive packages.
- Fully developed over 280 acres of rural county-owned industrial property and 100 acres of private industrial/ commercial property resulting in 44 new businesses, 1,000+ new jobs and over $40M in new investment. Completed major projects in communities with populations under 2,500.
- Acquired 136 rural county-owned industrial acres, recruited 2 businesses producing 50 jobs and $1M investment.
- Spearheaded effort that resulted in the establishment of $2M multi-purpose facility in the City of Purvis.
- Successfully negotiated and prepared packages that resulted in industrial expansions creating 215 new jobs and $13M in investments.
JOAN WALL, Page 2 of 3
BILL COUNTY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DISTRICT/ CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, CONTINUED
- Recognized for initiating the establishment, development and staffing of a retail and commercial recruitment department that successfully recruited over 50 new businesses, generated 2,000+ new jobs and over $100M in new investments.
- Facilitated meetings with county and municipal officials to increase economic development budget by 400%.
- Created powerful marketing messages and incentive programs to attract new companies.
- Designed, implemented and monitored incentive programs to lure high pay, high technology companies.
- Developed website that was awarded Best of Class by the American Economic Development Council.
- Developed brochure and won Best of Class by the American Economic Development Council.
- Formed, staffed and recruited membership for first Chamber of Commerce at County level. Consolidated 3 flailing local chambers and grew membership to over 400 members in the first year.
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR | 1992 - 1994
AREA DEVELOPMENT PARTNERSHIP | HATTIESBURG, MS
Managed the economic development and research departments of this countywide program representing the City of Hattiesburg and Forrest County, population 68,000. Raised $1.25M in working funds through community outreach program and built a professional marketing program to significantly increase new business recruitment and expansion.
- Delivered $75M investment and over 1,000 jobs by preparing proposal and negotiating initial incentives for Sunbeam-Oster's 750,000 square foot manufacturing, warehousing and distribution facility.
- Prepared financial pro formas highlighting tax and financial incentives for the expansion of 5 local industries resulting in the creation of more than 250 jobs and investments exceeding $10M.
- Conducted study that analyzed telecommunications infrastructure in the City and identified properties and locales with the infrastructure necessary to effectively recruit high technology industries that produced 150 new jobs.
- Developed targeted recruitment campaign focusing on polymer-related and telecommunications intensive companies, successfully attracting Oster and several other key firms.
- Won Best of Class by the American Economic Development Council for targeted direct mail campaign.
- Facilitated strategic planning process for the Hattiesburg MSA (City of Hattiesburg, Forrest and Lamar Counties).
- Worked closely with Chamber of Commerce Division.
- Served as Partnership liaison for the SCORE (Service Corp of Retired Executives) Committee.
- Assisted HugFest and Old Time Festival Committees in planning and working events.
- Worked with FirstFriday (Breakfast Networking Event) Committee.
- Assisted Retirement Connectors Committee in recruitment of retirees to the Hattiesburg MSA.
- Provided marketing assistance to the Convention & Tourism Division and served as liaison for the Southeast Mississippi Rural Tourism Association.
MANAGER, SOUTHEAST REGIONAL OFFICE | 1991 - 1992
MISSISSIPPI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY, SOUTHEAST REGIONAL OFFICE | HATTIESBURG, MS
Directly responsible for delivery of all Mississippi Development Authority programs in a 15-county region in Southeast Mississippi. Delivered consulting services to area businesses in the areas of cash flow management, inventory control and other business related activities. Assisted entrepreneurs in the development of business plans including financial pro formas and marketing plans. Directly responsible for delivery of strategic planning assistance to local municipal and county governments including facilitation of strategic planning retreats.
- Provided consulting services regarding offshore manufacturing locations for apparel manufacturing operations in South Mississippi. Conducted marketing studies for small businesses regarding introduction of new products in the national marketplace.
- Assisted small businesses in the identification of new customers. Provided workforce training assistance for small businesses.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR | 1989 - 1991
WAYNE COUNTY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DISTRICT | WAYNESBORO, MS
Directly responsible for the management and program development of the county's first economic development agency.
- Successfully located the county's first new industry in several years resulting in the creation of 50 new jobs and a capital investment of $500K. Subsequently, assisted the same industry in an expansion resulting in an additional 25 jobs and $250K investment.
- Acquired financing to double the capacity of the City of Waynesboro's sewage treatment facility and to pave and/or resurface approximately 4 miles of road in the city's industrial park complex.
- Prepared financial/ incentive packages for the expansion of two local industries resulting in the creation of 35 new jobs and a capital investment of $1.5 million.
EDUCATION, CERTIFICATIONS & AFFILIATIONS
Master of Science, Economic Development
Bachelor of Science, American Studies | Cum Laude
University of Southern Mississippi | Hattiesburg, Mississippi
Professional Education & Certification
Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP) | National Development Council
Certified Economic & Community Developer | International Economic Development Council
Brownfields Redevelopment Workshop | International Economic Development Council
Entrepreneurial and Small Business Development Strategies Workshop | International Economic Development Council
International Economic Development Council
Mississippi Economic Development Council
Southern Economic Development Council
Mississippi Delta Developer's Association
Mississippi Manufacturer's Association
Mississippi Economic Council