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PDI 40 Years


By Stacie LoVan, PDI President

Stacie LoVan
PDI President

I would like to take a minute to say THANK YOU for your continued investment in PDI! Membership renewals this year have remained strong which speaks to our collective success in the economic development arena.

As a PDI member, you have access to a host of resources to help you do economic development in Iowa:

  • Exclusive access to the PDI Post, delivered 18 times each year, and PDI's website will keep you up-to-date on the latest economic development news in Iowa.
  • The PDI Spring Event and Fall Conference are both are designed to bring you new and vital information on opportunities, issues, and trends pertinent to economic development in our state. The conferences also provide you with the opportunity to network with your peers and learn what is working or not working in their region.
  • PDI continues to represent our members with a strong voice at the State Capitol. With the legislature now in session, our lobbyists and leaders are regularly at the capitol making sure our economic development priorities are top of mind and keeping you informed of important developments.
  • Have you taken advantage of PDI's scholarship funds or the mentorship program? PDI members are encouraged to apply for scholarships to attend educational courses, such as Heartland Economic Development, Economic Development Institute, IEDC training courses and many more. Whether you are looking for a career mentor or one for a specific issue, check out our website for a resource coach who has expertise in the area you need.

I hope you are taking advantage of these benefits of membership. Thank you again for your commitment to economic development in Iowa! Together we are PDI!


 Jim Gossett Talks about PDI's 40th Anniversary


View Jim Gossett's Interview >>


 Ten Iowa Communities Apply for New State Assistance through the Iowa Reinvestment Act

Ten municipalities throughout the state have filed applications with the Iowa Economic Development Authority in hopes of becoming inaugural recipients of a new financing opportunity, funded by future state hotel/motel tax and new sales-and-use tax revenues. This financing mechanism, known as the Iowa Reinvestment Act, was signed into law during last year's legislative session. This unique funding tool is opening new doors for communities and economic developers across the state.

The ten applicants are collectively seeking around $132.1 million in state financial assistance, well above the Act's statutory lifetime cap of $100 million. This discrepancy is but one of the issues Director Debi Durham and the selection committee at the Iowa Economic Development Authority will be forced to weigh as they determine which applications will receive funding and the level of funding each approved project will receive. The ten proposals received by the authority for evaluation are:

More Information >>

 Help Shape the Future of Manufacturing in Iowa

Imagine a space for collaboration among the state's manufacturers. What would it look like? What issues would it address?

Right now, there is a statewide initiative underway to address just these questions and more. The industry-led effort has representation from manufacturers, economic development and appropriate state agencies to develop a preliminary plan about how to design and implement strategies that would create the Iowa Advanced Manufacturing Center.

More Information >>

 Regionalism: Economy Built for Long-term Stability
By Brent Willett, Globe Gazette, February 28, 2014

One of my favorite baseball statistical measures is WAR — wins above replacement.

WAR attempts to summarize a player's total contributions to his team in one statistic. It basically looks at a player and asks the question, “If this player got injured and their team had to replace them with another player, how much value would the team be losing?"




 Policy News

Please see the most recent edition of Policy Perspectives.

Read Policy Perspectives >>


 Greene County Becomes First Home Base Iowa Community
Published in the Business Record Daily AM, March 13, 2014

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad today designated Greene County as the first Home Base Iowa Community in the state. Home Base Iowa is an initiative aimed at attracting military veterans to jobs in the state. Greene County has added 31 Home Base Iowa businesses, which have a goal of hiring 321 veterans collectively over the next five years. The initiative is a step toward trying to close the skilled worker gap in the state, and officials in Greene County and the city of Jefferson expect more than 800 skilled employees will be needed in the area over the next five years.

 Iowa Among Gop 10 States for Clean Energy Jobs
Published in the Business Record Daily PM, March 12, 2014

Iowa was among the top states in the country in creating "clean energy" jobs in the fourth quarter, according to a new report released today by Environmental Entrepreneurs.

Project announcements in wind energy, biofuels and recycling led to 650 clean energy jobs being created in Iowa during the fourth quarter, which placed the state fifth in the nation for the quarter based on the number of jobs created.




 Job Postings:

Workforce Development Coordinator, Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, Waterloo
Executive Director, Osceola County Economic Development Commission, Osceola

More Information >>



 SAVE THE DATE for PDI's Spring Event!
May 1-2, 2014, Renaissance Hotel Savery, Des Moines, Iowa
Registration Open by the End of February

This educational and networking opportunity, held at the Renaissance Des Moines Savery Hotel on Friday, May 2, will enhance the SMART Conference agenda, offering efficiency for attendees of both events. Economic development professionals will learn first-hand from Neil Linscheid, Educator, Community Economics — Center for Community Vitality, University of Minnesota Extension who will delve further into: Rewriting the Rural Narrative: Developing your plan to attract and retain newcomers.

The morning presentation will also include an update on STEM and a legislative update. You won't want to miss this two day event! You can register for all both days on PDI's website starting February 28. Hotel reservations at the Renaissance Des Moines Savery Hotel (800) 514-4706 or by WEBLINK...

Book your group rate: Professional Developers of Iowa >>

PDI's room rate is $125/night.

 BRE Program Award Applications Due April 1

Every economic development professional knows that business retention and expansion (BRE) is a fundamental component of any economic development program. To promote successful BRE programming, PDI, along with our sponsors Smart Solutions Group and eSynchronist, will once again recognize local communities and organizations that are successfully implementing BRE programs. All PDI Members are welcome and encouraged to apply.

Four awards will be given to outstanding communities during the SMART Conference on Thursday, May 1, 2014. The awards will recognize communities that stand out above the rest with successful initiatives. There are two award categories:

  1. The Overall BRE Program Award will recognize communities/counties or regions that have established a successful, continuous BRE program in their area.
  2. The Single Project (Issue) Success Award will recognize a community that successfully mobilized to retain and/or expand an existing business.
This is a chance to be recognized in front of your peers and celebrate the victories in your community. Please submit your application by April 1, 2014.


 OU/EDI Strategic Planning Course
March 17 — May 11, 2014
More Information >>

 2014 Statewide STEM Conference
March 28, 2014
Des Moines, IA
More Information & Registration >>

 Heartland Economic Development Course
April 6-10, 2014
Adams Pointe Conference Center
Blue Springs, Missouri
More Information >>

 C2ER Training Sessions: The Fundamentals of Impact Analysis
April 16 & 17, 2014
Arlington, VA
More Information & Registration >>

 Iowa SMART Conference
May 1, 2014
Iowa Event Center
Des Moines, Iowa
More Information >>

 EntreFEST 2014
May 14-16, 2014
Iowa City, IA
More Information >>

 OU/EDI Entrepreneurship Course
May 19 — July 13, 2014
More Information >>

 OU/EDI Marketing & Attraction Course
July 21 — September 14, 2014
More Information >>

 OU/EDI Business Retention & Expansion Course
September 22 — November 16, 2014
More Information >>

For more information, contact Lynn Harkin, PDI Headquarters at (515) 243-4585 or Email


PDI Thanks the 2014 Sponsors



Alliant Energy

Renew Rural Iowa

Triple Event Sponsors
Iowa Economic Development Authority
Iowa Workforce Development
ITC Midwest
Kossuth/Palo Alto County Economic Development Corp.

Conference Exhibit Sponsors — Fall & Spring
Center for Industrial Research & Service - ISU
Convergent Fundraising Solutions
Diligent Development

Fall Only
Iowa Small Business Development Centers
North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corporation
Spring Only
UNI-Small Business Development Center

BREI Award
Smart Solutions Group
Blane Canada

Contributing Sponsors — Fall & Spring
Central Iowa Power Cooperative (CIPCO)
Iowa Association of Business & Industry
Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative
Greater Des Moines Partnership
Midland Power Cooperative
Spring only
Iowa Utility Association
Fall only
Access Energy
Greater Burlington Partnership
Maquoketa Valley Electric Cooperative

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