April 22, 2019 – Greensboro, NC-based Jorgenson Consulting has been enlisted to find a new chief executive officer for the Downtown Investment Authority (DIA) in Jacksonville, FL.
Former CEO Aundra Wallace stepped down last fall to become president of JAXUSA Partnership, the economic development arm of JAX Chamber, the Jacksonville chamber of commerce. Brian Hughes, chief of staff for Jacksonville’s mayor, has been serving as interim CEO of the authority since October.
Among the candidates under consideration for the role is outgoing city council member Lori Boyer, according to the Jacksonville Daily Record. “I am interested,” Ms. Boyer told reporters last week. “I submitted a resume. I am one of the people (who) interviewed. I don’t know how many people interviewed or who any of the other folks were.”
Ms. Boyer, whose second and final council term ends this summer, serves as the council’s liaison to the DIA. Among the obstacles for Ms. Boyer, however, would be state ethics rules that prohibit former city officials from serving in such a role before the council for two years, said the Daily Record. Ms. Boyer suggested that if she won the job a staff member could represent the DIA with the council on her behalf for routine matters.
A Host of Responsibilities
The CEO of the DIA is charged with leading, facilitating, inspiring, planning and managing the organization’s programs and activities, said Jorgenson Consulting. The CEO reports to the group’s board of directors, providing the necessary financial and administrative reporting information and support to enable the board to make responsible and prudent policy decisions.
DIA’s leader is responsible for day-to-day management of the staff and budget of the organization, said the search firm. The CEO will be expected to execute the strategic directions of the DIA, and develop and maintain excellent relationships with all downtown and community stakeholders, including elected officials, property owners, developers, business operators, residents, government agencies and community leaders. The CEO must be able to build, strengthen and energize a high performance staff that can successfully implement and manage current and future initiatives, while providing a collaborative and empowering environment.
The DIA was created to revitalize downtown Jacksonville by utilizing community redevelopment area (CRA) resources and the Downtown Development Trust Fund to spur economic development. DIA and the City of Jacksonville offer a variety of incentives for business to locate downtown, including expedited permitting and economic development incentives.
A Respected Recruiter
The DIA’s investments are steered by a nine-member board of directors who conduct open-to-the-public business on an unpaid, volunteer basis. Four are confirmed by the city council and five by the mayor. The organization was formed to revitalize and preserve downtown property values and prevent deterioration in the downtown business district.
Founded in 1992, Jorgenson Consulting focuses on the fields of non-profit, economic and community development. The firm, which serves state organizations as well as a multitude of organizational structures, has led searches in rural communities, mid-sized markets and metropolitan regions. In addition to North Carolina, Jorgenson Consulting has offices in Colorado, Florida, Maryland and New York.
Todd W.S. Jorgenson, managing director and principal, specializes in executive searches for non-profit, community and economic development entities throughout the U.S. His experience includes non-profit executive searches, information technology searches, executive compensation, sales operation management, business development and sales. Mr. Jorgenson began his career recruiting software engineers from the Department of Defense and National Security agencies to work on classified government contractor projects. He also worked in the field of information technology and telecommunications infrastructure, working for successful technology-based companies like U.S. Robotics, 3Com and Universal Access. His experience ranges from business development to running the Middle East and Africa sale operations out of Paris, France.
Joan Jorgenson, managing director and principal, brings over 25 years of executive search experience within the economic development, chamber of commerce, government and private sector organizations. Ms. Jorgenson has held consulting and human resource management positions at PHH Fantus, Beatrice Companies, Gould and American Hospital Supply Corp. Her areas of expertise include executive search, public and private sector organization development, compensation and policy development. She has conducted numerous executive search assignments for chamber and economic and community development executives throughout the country.
Jorgenson Consulting recently recruited Kevin Carter as president and CEO of the Amarillo (TX) Economic Development Corp., Rodrick T. Miller as CEO of Invest Puerto Rico and Rob Sitterley as president and CEO of AR-TX Regional Economic Development Inc.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media