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Chris_Camacho-biopic

GPEC names Chris Camacho new CEO

The Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) Board of Directors unanimously selected Chris Camacho as the organization’s fourth president and CEO during a special meeting today.

Camacho has served as executive vice president of GPEC since joining the organization in 2008. He oversaw the organization’s top line performance measures, including domestic and international business development and market strategies. Camacho has also served as a primary conduit to Maricopa County and cities in the region.

“Chris is one of the leading economic development professionals in the country and unquestionably the best candidate for the position,” said Don Smith, GPEC board chairman and CopperPoint Mutual president. “His proven leadership acumen and depth of experience will enhance the momentum of the organization and propel our work forward. Following an extensive evaluation, the Board was confident in the strength of our leadership succession plan. Chris has the full support of our communities and stakeholders.”

Over the course of his career, Camacho has earned regional and national recognition. This month, he was recognized by Consultant Connect as a Top 50 Economic Developer in North America. He has served as president of the Arizona Association for Economic Development, and was named Economic Developer of the Year by the organization in 2011. Both the Phoenix Business Journal in 2012 and Development Counsellors International in 2013 recognized him as one of the 40 under 40.

“I am fully invested in seeing the future sustainability of our region supported by significant business growth and collaborative economic development initiatives,” said Camacho. “I am humbled by the board’s decision and the outpouring of support I have received from the community. Greater Phoenix has become home to me and my family.”

During Camacho’s tenure, GPEC has led the attraction of 174 companies, creating 26,688 jobs and $2.2 billion in capital investment. Notable projects include Silicon Valley Bank, Zenefits, GoDaddy, Yelp, Amazon, Garmin and General Motors, among many others.

Previous GPEC CEOs include Ioanna Morfessis, Rick Weddle and the most recent president and CEO, Barry Broome.

Strategic Economic Development Plan

Gilbert’s Strategic Economic Development Plan To Focus On Science, Technology

Economic Development Plan

The Gilbert, Ariz., Economic Development Office (EDO) is actively developing a strategic plan to attract companies and researchers from around the world to its community.

Operating under a mandate from its town council, the EDO organized citizen work groups and has held numerous meetings with business and community leaders to discuss opportunities, challenges and initiatives to enhance its economic policies, workforce development and marketing and branding. Eliciting input from the work groups ensured that the needs of the business community were fully understood and that all stakeholders would be represented in the strategic plan.

Economic development consultant Dr. Ioanna Morfessis was contracted by Gilbert to facilitate collaboration and prioritize recommendations within the work groups to help Gilbert achieve its goals.

“This five-year Strategic Economic Development Plan will effectively channel Gilbert’s resources into producing positive, measured results to meet its goals,” Morfessis says.

As a result of the Gilbert Town Council mandate and Summer 2011 work group meetings, it was determined that Gilbert should focus its economic development strategy on science and technology industries with an emphasis on biotech and life sciences. Gilbert is recognized as a regional leader in life science research and treatments for cancer and for research and therapies utilizing adult stem cells.

“Attracting companies from the biotech and life science industry sectors will strengthen Gilbert economically and provide immeasurable future benefits to our community as we work to become a net importer of these jobs over the next 20 years,” says Gilbert Mayor John Lewis. “I would like to personally thank the participants of our recent work group meetings for their time and valuable contributions to our strategic plan.”

“The Greater Phoenix region is emerging as a leader in personalized medicine, and Gilbert is a great example of a progressive and strategic effort toward the biomedical and health science community,” says Barry Broome, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. “Gilbert’s wealth of health care assets, like MD Anderson, make it particularly well positioned under this mantle in the delivery of personalized care in the oncology sector.”

“Gilbert is fortunate to have several world-class anchor institutions, innovative private corporations and community assets that make it uniquely attractive to life science companies,” says Morfessis, founder of the international consulting firm, IO.INC.

Morfessis was recently recognized by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) with the Lifetime Achievement Award for her esteemed career of empowering communities and companies to prosper. She was the founding president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, working with Gilbert and other regional communities to attract more than 200 firms that generated more than 165,000 new direct jobs during her tenure.

For more information about Gilbert’s Economic Development Office and the five-year Strategic Economic Development Plan, visit gilbertaz.gov/econdev.