Click here to view this email in your browser.


PDI 40 Years


 Save the Date - PDI Conference!


Tod Faris's Invitation to
the PDI Fall Conference >>


 Maureen Elbert Talks about PDI's 40th Anniversary


View Maureen Elbert's Interview >>


 Partner With the Business Concierge to Connect Businesses with Information

Professional Developers of Iowa; The Business Concierge, a program of UNIs MyEntre.Net, wants to share their services with you! Since 2011, the Business Concierge has been working with small business owners across Iowa to provide free market research and high quality referrals. In the past 3 years we have served over 1000 clients with information to help start and grow their businesses.
Learn More about the Business Concierge >>

This year we have created a web portal that can be placed onto partner websites to allow for quick and easy access to the Iowa Business Concierge. The portal can be placed into any existing website at no cost. Once it is placed the business owners can get market research information from the Business Concierge without ever leaving your website. Each time the portal is used, you will be connected with them to help start, grow, or expand their business in your area.

The Cherokee Area Economic Development was the first to implement this new feature.
Check It on Their Website >>

To bring the Iowa Business Concierge to your website; please contact Patrick Luensmann by phone at 319-273-4335 or by email at

 IEDA Adding a Few New Twists to Marketing Mix

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

The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) has been incorporating some new marketing components to the mix over the last several months. While direct marketing has always been one part of our overall efforts, IEDA now has been leveraging prominent Iowa CEOs as cover models.

More Information >>

 Bike Trail Tourism Conference Set for April 10 at Hotel Pattee

"Bike Trail Tourism – Getting More Out of Your Trail" is a conference set for Thursday, April 10 at the Hotel Pattee in Perry. How to capture more economic benefit from our trails is the focus of this conference, said Jim Miller of Waukee, board member of the Raccoon River Valley Trail (RRVT) and one of the conference organizers.

"We're really fortunate to have the RRVT and the High Trestle trail go through our communities here in central Iowa, said Miller. This conference was developed to help towns on the trail get more out of this valuable new community asset. Our primary audience is local leaders of towns on the trail, trying to give them ideas and strategies to get more economic benefit from bike trails."


 Walt Disney Institute at Iowa Central Community College

Are you ready to bring clarity to your business challenges?
Are you ready to inspire new ways of thinking about organizational effectiveness?

Then, you're ready to D'Think...
Iowa Central Community College, Welcomes Disney Institute.

This immersive benchmarking experience will engage you in the time-tested best practices, sound methodologies, and real life business lessons that sustained the global success of Disney for over 85 years. The result? Relevant tools and actionable strategies that can be adapted to achieve your transformation goals.

This event is sponsored by Iowa Central Community College, SBDC, Spin Markket and Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance.

Thursday, April 24, 2014 - 8:30AM-4:30PM
One Triton Circle, Bio Science Health Science Building, Fort Dodge, IA
Registration Fee: $225.00 – Call 1-800-362-2793, ext. 1293

More Information & Registration >>



 Policy News

Please see the most recent edition of Policy Perspectives.

Read Policy Perspectives >>


Brent Willett
 Willett Named as Executive Director of Capital Corridor Initiative
Reported in the Business Record Daily PM, March 26, 2014

Brent Willett has been named the executive director of the Capitol Corridor initiative, the Greater Des Moines Partnership announced today. Willett most recently served as president and CEO of the North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corporation, where he has worked since 2011.

The Capitol Corridor initiative is part of the Capital Crossroads vision process. Regional leaders have identified the need for the region to brand itself as a life-sciences hub, with collaboration between Greater Des Moines and Ames.




 Did You Know?

Did you know….that PDI offers a Provisional Membership Status for existing PDI members it is an opportunity to maintain their PDI membership if they lose their job with their organization through no fault of your own. The PDI Board of Directors recently approved a provisional "job loss" program that will allow a PDI member to continue his/her membership so that he/she can continue to receive emails, newsletters, and an opportunity to participate in events at membership rates. This new "job loss" program will allow for these individuals to maintain their network of colleagues and potentially develop their careers. If your job has been affected or you need additional information, please contact Lynn Harkin, PDI Executive Director (, and notify her of your status. PDI is committed to assisting its members through these tough economic times. We hope that the next quarters of 2014 turn out to be vibrant times of economic recovery benefiting Iowa.

 New Members

Paul Kinghorn, UNI Regional Business Center, Cedar Falls
Holly Kueter. East Central Intergovernmental Association, Dubuque
David R. Wilwerding, AICP, City of Johnston, Johnston
Cheryl O'Hern, Spin Markket, Fort Dodge

 Job Postings:

Workforce Development Coordinator, Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, Waterloo
President & CEO, North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corporation Mason City

More Information >>



 REGISTER for PDI's Spring Event
May 1-2, 2014, Renaissance Hotel Savery, Des Moines, Iowa

Registration Today and Hear More from Neil Linscheid

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.



 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 >>

 PDI Spring Event
May 2, 2014
Renaissance Savery Des Moines Hotel
Des Moines, IA
More Information & Registration >>

 OU/EDI Onsite Course
May 4-8, 2014
Dallas, TX

 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 Supporting Sponsors
Black Hills Energy (Fall only)

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

Fall Only
Consulting Group Inc.
Iowa Small Business Development Centers
North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corporation
Point Builders LLC
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

Twitter      Facebook      LinkedIn


Published by WinM@il