Economic Development Director

Chesterfield County Council   Columbia, SC   Full-time     Other
Posted on October 31, 2021

Chesterfield County Council is seeking a Economic Development Director

Minimum Requirements:
Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Marketing, Economics, or related field. Master’s degree and/or CEcD professional certification preferred. Formal education or proven services in business, community planning, economic development or related field. Demonstration of achievements, leadership and organizational skills that indicate the ability to bring people together to accomplish a common goal. Possession of a valid driver’s
license upon hire. Chesterfield County resident within a reasonable time of hire.

Skills and Abilities to:
• Lead program direction and to acquire knowledge of available resources and processes to
accomplish development goals.
• Serve as an agent that will produce a competitive environment for community and
economic development.
• Direct, plan, organize and manage finances of the economic development program.
• Make sound judgments regarding setting priorities and strategies to accomplish goals.
• Establish and maintain working relationships with staff, elected and appointed officials,
development allies and others while unifying diverse groups for the common good.
• Communicate effectively through writing and public speaking.
• Have considerable knowledge of the assets of the community and federal, state, and local
laws pertaining to economic development and planning.

Position Supervision:
The Economic Development Director will work under limited supervision of the County
Administrator. He/she is expected to exercise ethical principles, sound judgment and discretion
when dealing with assigned responsibilities that will enhance the economic well being and
quality of life for the citizens of Chesterfield County. Establishment of a positive working
relationship with elected and appointed officials, development allies and other partners within
the county and throughout the region and State of South Carolina is a must. Understand and
adhere to the definition of “confidentiality” as established by the South Carolina Department of
Commerce. Serve as the county’s economic development liaison with the regional development
alliances and the South Carolina Department of Commerce

Job Responsibilities:

The Economic Development Director will build relationships with elected officials,
development, education, and utility partners to implement an effective economic development
program focused on the following:

Develop and implement comprehensive short and long-term plans to positively impact
the economic development program and community development.
• Program of Work (12 months) – Work annually with local development board and
county officials to develop short term measureable goals and strategies.
• Long Term (2-5 yrs.) – Work with local development board, development allies and
county officials to develop long term goals and strategies to gain effective and
positive growth in the county. Long term goals should take into account all land
use/zoning plans in the county.

Work with county officials to plan for the necessary water/sewer, telecommunications,
and roadway infrastructure to meet current and future needs of the community,
prospective businesses and industry.
• Develop close working relationship with all utility providers.
• Ensure development of database detailing utility availability and capacities.
• Semi-annually update infrastructure database.
• Exhibit/maintain working knowledge of utility availability, location and capacities.
• Ensure the county has a long-range plan for infrastructure/utility development.
• Work with local utilities to determine appropriate areas for infrastructure
development, consolidation or expansion.

Product Development
• Maintain an inventory of quality industrial park(s), sites, and buildings to meet
prospect needs that contribute to the quality of life in the community.
• Identify and assess industrial sites and buildings to determine quality prior to and
during the promotion of property. Economic Development Director/economic
development office should serve as the clearing house for all site and building
• Develop a strong working relationship with commercial realtors and developers in the
area to assist in the development or construction of industrial sites, industrial parks
and speculative buildings in order to have knowledge of properties not actively listed,
but potentially valuable for growth.
• Review all inventory for accuracy in a timely fashion. Notification of updates should
be sent to the Department of Commerce as well as the regional development alliances
in a timely manner.
• Communicate any changes of information to appropriate ally organizations.
• Planning for the development of product (industrial sites, industrial parks or
speculative buildings) should not create a burden for the taxpayers or create
unreasonable infrastructure costs.
• Design, develop, implement and enforce an “Appearance Policy” needed to ensure
that empty buildings and marginal properties do not become a detriment to economic
• Ensure product development occurs in suitable/appropriate areas of the county.

Property Taxes
Identify, develop, implement and execute a cost benefit analysis on each project worked
through the economic development office to evaluate the viability of the project and its
short-term and long-term financial impact on the county.
• Serve as local expert and resource regarding county statistical data and other
• Provide County Council and other local officials with guidance and recommendations
as to how county economic development projects should be addressed regarding
future tax revenue.
• Meet with County Council and other local officials to review economic development
policies as they relate to property taxes.
• Ensure that new projects do not create a financial burden to the county or existing

Prospecting, Leads and Project Management/Marketing
• Reporting
o Report to County Council as to the nature and status of projects and provide
data sufficient to permit Council to reach informed decisions regarding all
aspects of projects including, but not limited to, approval of incentives.
o Report monthly and share annual program of work benchmarks.
o Observe “confidentiality” guidelines in compliance with South Carolina
Department of Commerce policies in the reporting process.
• Maintain existing industry program to address needs and problems of local
o Serve as the point of contact for local industry.
o Establish a good working relationship to assist in resolving local issues as well as
determining potential expansion plans and developing a listing of potential
• Develop attractive and effective marketing program/materials/methods to promote
the benefits of the county and communities.
o Work with regional economic development alliances and the South Carolina
Department of Commerce to coordinate marketing materials and information
for uniform appearance.
o Review at least quarterly county economic development web site for accuracy.
o Work with County Council, school district and municipalities to coordinate
marketing materials to create a unified message.
• Develop awareness program to improve community cleanliness and appearance.
o Work with County Council and litter agencies/organizations to ensure all efforts
are made to maintain clean and attractive main thoroughfares, highways and main
entrances into downtown areas.

Workforce Development
• Maintain a local workforce improvement program capable of producing a “ready”
workforce for prospective business and industry to ensure local unemployment
levels decrease.
o Meet with all local providers of employment assistance, secondary education and
visit the One-Stop Centers to determine the skill level of the current workforce
and the unemployed.
• Work with appropriate employment (One-Stop Center) and education allies (school
district, Northeastern Technical College (NETC), and others) to produce a plan of
action to address local deficient skills areas and ways to reach local citizens in need
of skills training

Local Developer Education
• Participate in training programs and workshops to continue improvement of
professional skills development. This goes beyond the usual state, regional and
national associations.
• Annually attend and participate in programs to enhance personal work skills, i.e.,
computer training, letter writing, workforce development, financial analysis, office
management, funding raising and report writing just to mention a few.
• Work toward achievement of certified economic developer designation (CEcD) under
state, regional or national guidelines (if not already obtained).

• Develop policies and procedures for office staff to ensure quality customer service.
• Ensure economic development office equipment is updated and supports professional
level presentations and information services.
• Maintain and reflect a professional business environment.