(Avondale, LA) – The Jefferson Parish Economic Development Commission (JEDCO) received international recognition for excellence and innovation in economic development on Tuesday, September 20. JEDCO won Excellence Awards from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) in three categories. The organization accepted awards for every category in which it submitted a project.
The IEDC is the largest nonprofit professional association for professional economic developers in the world. The 2022 IEDC Excellence Awards honor organizations for exemplary economic development marketing campaigns, projects, and programs. Awards are judged by a diverse panel of economic and community developers from around the world. IEDC received over 500 submissions from the United States and four additional countries around the word. JEDCO was recognized in the following categories:
Neighborhood Development, Silver Award – Terrytown Neighborhood Revitalization Strategic Plan and Model Home Program: The Terrytown Neighborhood Revitalization Study Strategic Plan is a progressive vision to improve the housing stock and quality of life in Terrytown, the oldest planned suburban development in Jefferson Parish with many community strengths, opportunities, and challenges. The plan serves as a model for other neighborhoods across Jefferson Parish, providing opportunities to retain residents and attract a new generation of homebuyers. Out of the plan, JEDCO played a role in the construction of a 1,500 square-foot, mid-century modern model home, created a property tax incentive for those who renovate their homes and businesses, engaged in a land use and zoning study of key corridors within Terrytown, and supported the revitalization and launch of several businesses in the area. The Terrytown Neighborhood Revitalization Strategic Plan provides a holistic approach to driving quality of life, investment, and job creation in Jefferson Parish.
Innovative Finance Project, Silver Award – JEDgrow Loan Program: Through the JEDCO Growth Fund (JEDgrow) Program, JEDCO supports economic development and investment in Jefferson Parish by creating opportunities for small businesses to grow and expand in the area. JEDgrow was specifically designed to provide creative financing solutions for small businesses that were unable to secure traditional loans through a bank. Before JEDgrow, JEDCO offered four different revolving loan funds (EDA, HUD, LRCF, and ILTAP). In 2017, JEDCO combined the four sources of funding to create the JEDgrow Program, providing for a more flexible and creative approach to financing. JEDCO developed a strategic marketing campaign to raise awareness about the program by elevating JEDCO borrowers and sharing their stories across multiple platforms, including print ads and JEDCO podcast episodes. Since 2018, JEDCO has funded 62 projects for $9,046,223 and total project costs of $12.2 million. In 2021, 74% of all funded projects were for minority-owned and woman-owned businesses.
Innovation in Economic Development Week, Bronze Award – JEDCO’s Economic Development Week Campaign & Churchill sPark Kickoff Event: JEDCO used Economic Development Week 2022 as a platform to highlight JEDCO’s extensive role in the community, elevate the organization’s current messaging and initiatives, and launch new programming in alignment with the 2022 Strategic Operating Plan and Jefferson Parish’s long-term economic development strategic plan (Jefferson EDGE 2025). JEDCO hosted a Kick-off Event & Open House to promote interest in Economic Development Week. This was the first public event held at Churchill Technology and Business Park, a 480-acre Jefferson Parish asset being developed by JEDCO. JEDCO invited partners and community leaders for food, music, and open house tours of the JEDCO Complex (located in Churchill Park). During the event, JEDCO hosted the grand opening of the JEDCO Finance Center, which houses JEDCO’s award-winning, top-performing Finance Department. The festivities continued with engaging social media content and video production; the re-launch of JEDCO’s podcast; a multi-parish mega-networking business event to close out the week, and a week of Spend Local Business Walks, where JEDCO’s staff visited small local businesses in all five of the Parish Council Districts.
“It is an honor to be recognized for the impactful work being done by JEDCO’s innovative, dynamic team of professionals,” said JEDCO President and CEO Jerry Bologna. “These projects and campaigns are characteristic of JEDCO’s strategic and holistic approach to economic development. Each of these projects showcase how we serve our business community at all levels, from building a dream home to financing a dream business to dreaming big with every project we undertake. It is a proud day for our organization, and I congratulate the JEDCO team for their hard work and dedication to Jefferson Parish.”
“Communities need our profession now more than ever. This year’s awardees exemplify the ingenuity, leadership, and determination needed to meet the challenges of today and the future. The winners of IEDC’s Excellence in Economic Development awards represent the best of economic development and demonstrate the level of leadership that our profession strives for every day,” shared IEDC President and CEO Nathan Ohle.
“This year’s awards selection process was especially competitive. We are honored to recognize the more than 100 communities whose marketing submissions, projects, and partnerships have improved regional quality of life,” added IEDC Awards Advisory Committee Chair Christina Winn.
The 2022 Excellence Awards were announced during IEDC’s Annual Conference in Oklahoma City.
About the International Economic Development Council
The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is a non-profit, non-partisan membership organization serving economic developers. With more than 4,800 members, IEDC is the largest organization of its kind. Economic developers promote economic well-being and quality of life for their communities by creating, retaining, and expanding jobs that facilitate growth, enhance wealth and provide a stable tax base. From public to private, rural to urban, and local to international, IEDC’s members engage in the full range of economic development practices. Given the breadth of economic development work, our members are employed in various settings, including local, state, provincial, and federal governments, public-private partnerships, chambers of commerce, universities, and a variety of other institutions. When we succeed, our members create high-quality jobs, develop vibrant communities, and improve the quality of life in their regions. Learn more at iedconline.org.