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  Development Update   Legislative Update   Statewide Pride   Who's Who   Events May 30, 2017


 Economic Development Organizations Receive Awards for Business Retention and Expansion Efforts

The Professional Developers of Iowa (PDI) honored economic development organizations from the Ida County, Sheldon, Lee County and Northwest Iowa areas during the SMART Economic Development Conference held in Des Moines on May 4. (Second of a 2-part highlight.)

The PDI Business Retention and Expansion (BRE) Awards recognize the contribution of BRE to the success of local and regional economic development initiatives. The purpose of the awards is to increase the focus on BRE in economic development organizations by identifying programs and projects that have significant impact on Iowa communities. Eligible projects are those in which the PDI member played a coordinating role or in which BRE activities played an integral role in the success of an economic development strategy. There are two award categories for the BRE Awards: Overall BRE Program and the Single Project or Success.

We will spotlight the other two of the recipients in this issue...

The Single Project Success Award Winners:

This award recognizes a single event or issue in which a community successfully mobilized to retain or expand an existing business. Consideration was given to the process of identifying the opportunity, collaboration with local, regional and/or state partners and the ability to respond quickly. We have two awards to present in the Single BRE Project/Success Category.

Rosenboom Machine & Tool Expansion Project / Sheldon Chamber and Development Corporation
Rosenboom Machine and Tool, Inc. was established in 1974 and is a privately owned company with approximately 800 employees and three manufacturing location (two in Iowa). During a routine Synchronist Retention visit, it was noted that the company was working on a federal government contract that would necessitate a major building expansion in Sheldon. The company was successful in obtaining the contract and expanded their Sheldon facilities by 48,000 SF at a cost of $16 million. They will also create 54 new jobs.

Rosenboom Machine & Tool, Inc. and Sheldon Chamber and Development Corporation

Representing the Sheldon Chamber and Development Corporation on their business retention and expansion award is Lary Rosenboom & Justin Rosenboom - Rosenboom Machine and Tool, Inc.; Curt Strouth, Community Development Director, Sheldon Chamber and Development Corporation; Pete Hamill, Sheldon City Council Member; and Tom Eggers, Secretary/Treasurer, Sheldon Chamber and Development Corporation.

VT Industries / Ida County Economic Development
Their opportunity was to retain the countyís largest employer, VT Industries, when they were looking at other expansion locations across the United States. Ida County Economic Development worked with community partners to develop a proposal that contained potential incentives and future investments that were being planned by the community that would increase future opportunities for the company. The project resulted in a $21 million investment by the company and the creation of 60 new jobs.


Accepting the award are VT Industries, Inc. representatives Jason Farver, Executive Vice President; Frank Forneris, Facilities Manager; and Cordell Burton, Director of Corporate Engineering. plus Rita Frahm, Ida County Economic Development


 Check Out This Resource Directory for Iowa Manufacturers

Could your company use a strategy consultant? How about testing laboratories? There are so many state resources available for Iowa companies. Visit for an easy-to-use resource directory.

More Information >>




  2017 Legislative Session

For the recap of the 2017 Legislative Session >>



 Partnership a Top 10 Force for Economic Development
Business Record PM Daily, May 9, 2017

The Greater Des Moines Partnership has received Site Selection magazine's Mac Conway Award, which is given to the top 10 economic development organizations in the nation, according to a release. Scores are awarded based on six criteria: total projects, total investment associated with those projects, total jobs associated with those projects, and those same three numbers calculated per capita for the metro area. The Partnership reported contributing to $569 million in new capital investments, 24 local business expansion projects and 12 new companies relocating to Greater Des Moines in 2016, leading to 1,842 new or retained jobs. The magazine recognized significant projects, Microsoft and Facebook data centers and IMT Group's expansion. Since 1999, the Partnership has assisted with more than 500 projects that located or expanded in the region, according to the release.


 Cultivation Corridor Launches Interactive Database
Business Record PM Daily, May 9, 2017

The Cultivation Corridor has released the second version of its free Iowa Ag/Bioscience Asset Database. The portal provides information on Iowa's ag bioscience, agribusiness and health care industries, helping to guide new developments by allowing users to query based on ZIP code, city, county or economic development district, for example. The database provides, among other things, information on federal funding, university research centers, companies and biofuels plants. Drop-down menus allow many different searches.

Interactive Database >>

 Flexsteel to Invest $28 Million in New Plant, Keep at Least 200 Jobs in Dubuque
Jeff Montgomery & Ben Jacobson, Telegraph Herald, May 12, 2017

Flexsteel Industries plans to keep its manufacturing operations — and at least 200 related jobs — in Dubuque, the company announced Friday.

Chief Financial Officer Tim Hall said the company plans to invest $28 million in a new facility in Dubuque Industrial Center South, with work slated to begin later this year. Production will be shifted from Flexsteelís existing facility at 3400 Jackson St. to the new site in late summer or fall 2018.





 Mark Your Calendars

"The Partners, the Profession and the Process" workshop for those new to economic development or new to Iowa is scheduled for Tuesday, July 18, 2017, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon at the Farm Bureau Office, 5400 University Avenue, West Des Moines, Iowa.

An interactive day is planned. You will meet with PDI veterans that will lead discussions, make introductions, and answer questions. The session will conclude by 12:00 noon. There is NO COST to attend. Deadline to register is July . Questions? Contact Sandy Ehrig, Economic Development Administrator, Renew Rural Iowa/ Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, or Lynn Harkin, PDI Executive Director,

Register for Workshop >>

 New Members

Stacie Euken, Midwest Partnership EDC, Stuart, IA
Kathy MacBeth, EcoEngineers, Des Moines, IA

 Scholarship Recipient

David Gleiser, Woodbury County-Rural Economic Development, Sioux City, IA - OU-EDI, Ft. Lauderdale, FL - Nov 5-9, 2017

 Job Postings:

Executive Director, Montogomery County Development Corporation, Red Oak
Economic Development Director, Ackley Development Commission, Ackley
Economic Development Analyst, City of Davenport, Davenport
Chief Executive Officer, Greater Ottumwa Partners in Progress, Ottumwa

More Information >>



Iowa ABI's Taking Care of Business Conference
Tuesday, June 6 - Thursday, June 8, 2017
Grand River Center
Dubuque, IA
More Information & Registration >>

Fast-Track Iowa's Future Conference
Wednesday, June 20, 2017 - "STEM Ed Chat" Reception
Thursday, June 21, 2017 - Fast-Track Iowa's Future Conference
Iowa Events Center
Des Moines, IA
More Information & Registration >>

PPP Course: The Partners, the Profession and the Process
Tuesday, July 18, 2017, 9:00 - noon
Farm Bureau Board Room
5400 University Ave., West Des Moines, IA
More Information & Registration >>

The Iowa Downtown Conference
August 1 - 3, 2017
Sioux City, IA

PDI 2017 Fall Conference
September 27-29, 2017
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, Cedar Rapids Convention Complex
Cedar Rapids, IA

PDI Fall Conference

Synchronist Users Forum 2017
October 2-3, 2017
Chicago, IL

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


PDI Thanks the 2017 Sponsors







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

Conference Exhibitor Sponsors
Convergent Fundraising Solutions

Contributing Sponsors
Spring & Fall
Central Iowa Power Cooperative
Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative
Midland Power Cooperative
Spring only
Grater Des Moines Partnership
Iowa Utility Association
Fall only
Corn Belt Power Cooperative
Iowa Association of Business & Industry
North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corp.

Trap Shoot
Interstates Companies

BRE Awards
Blane Canada
Smart Solutions Group

Local Host Sponsors
Alliant Energy
Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance
Central Iowa Power Cooperative
City of Cedar Rapids
Iowa City Area Development Group, Inc.
ITC Midwest
Marion Economic Development Corporation


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