The Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) has announced the recipients of its annual Economic Development Distinguished by Excellence (EDDE) Awards. 

 The prestigious EDDE Awards honor individuals and companies that have made significant contributions to the advancement of the organization and to economic growth within the state of Arizona.  Recipients are selected from a pool of nominations made by members of AAED. 

The William Lampkin Award for Long Term Excellence in Economic Development was given to Lawrence T. Lucero, senior director of economic development for Tucson Electric Power Company, where he has worked for 25 years.

Lucero was honored for his tremendous accomplishments in economic development, including serving on the board of AAED, as chairman of the Tucson Metro Chamber, as president of the Arizona-Mexico Commission and on the State Board of Education, to name a few.

In the last three years alone, he has been involved in nearly 50 successful economic development projects that have resulted in the creation of close to 14,000 new jobs in Pima County.

Overall, 10 EDDEs were presented during an evening awards dinner at the AAED Spring Conference in Tucson.  The other winners are:

• Heath Vescovi-Chiordi, AZED Pro, economic development/downtown specialist, town of Marana, Member of the Year.

• Jeanine Jerkovic, CEcD, economic development director for the city of Surprise, Economic Developer of the Year, Large Community.

• Harry Paxton, CEcD, economic development project manager for the city of Goodyear, Economic Developer of the Year, Medium Community.

• Denyse Airheart, economic development director for the city of Maricopa, Economic Developer of the Year, Small Community.

• Ian Roark, Ed.D. vice president of workforce development for Pima Community College, Workforce Practitioner of the Year.

• Fernando Garcia, economic development specialist for the city of Casa Grande, New Member of the Year.

• City of Chandler, Large Organization of the Year.

• City of Goodyear, Medium Organization of the Year.

• Town of Camp Verde, Small Organization of the Year.

“What a tremendous honor it is for each of the EDDE Award winners to be recognized for their contributions to economic development,” said Joyce Grossman, AZED Pro, AAED’s executive director. “They truly represent the best and brightest economic development practitioners and organizations in Arizona and demonstrate not only a commitment to the communities they serve, but to the economic vitality across the state.”

AAED, founded in 1974, has a mission to serve as Arizona’s unified voice advocating for responsible economic development through an effective program of professional education, public policy and collaboration.    

For more information on AAED, visit or call (602) 240-2233.