Selection process for LSEDC’s top spot down to five finalists

tporter@lsjournal.comJune 6, 2014 

  • 5

    Number of finalists to replace the recently-retired Jim Devine as president of the Lee’s Summit Economic Development Council.

A new president of the Lee’s Summit Economic Development Council will be in place before the organization’s annual investors meeting July 9.

In presentation to LSEDC members June 4 interim president Steve Cohen, CEO of Labor Management Advisory Group, said the selection process to replace recently retired president Jim Devine has been narrowed down from 28 candidates to five finalists.

Devine retired May 15 after 15 years with the organization.

“We are in the process of scheduling and conducting those interviews,” Cohen said during the LSEDC’s working retreat June 4 at Paradise Park. “We will be on schedule for selection by the meeting on the 9th. You’ll know whose been selected and they’ll be working on a notice; normally a 30- to 45- to a 60-day notice.”

Cohen said the search has included regional candidates from Kansas and Missouri and some from other parts of the United States.

“We’ve got some terrific finalists for the position,” Cohen said. “I know that you’ll be pleased with the final decision because we have such strong semi-finalists, so it’s all good news.”

The LSEDC’s board and executive committee listed several desirable traits they looked for in candidates, Cohen said, and by in large the finalists all share those attributes in common.

“They all have a Master’s (degree),” he said. “They all have at least 10 years of experience in (economic development). There’s some city (government) experience, there’s some Chamber (of Commerce) experience; these are backgrounds of people that have been in and around (economic development) work the most of their careers. We are looking for people with a minimum of 10 years of experience, but some have up to 25.”

In other news, LSEDC board chairman Brad Cox announced that Holly Braswell, office manager for the past six years at LSEDC, has taken a job as account coordinator with candid marketing. Braswell’s last day with LSEDC was June 5.

“We wish you well,” Cox said to Braswell. “We hope you stay friends with the organization and we hope to see your face at our table as a representative of that organization.”

Braswell’s departure is the latest attrition from the LSEDC. Prior to Devine’s retirement, vice-president Teresa Evans left in October for a job with the Blue Springs Economic Development Council.

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