Chatham County Economic Development Corporation is pleased to announce that Michael Smith has been selected as President. Smith comes to Chatham County EDC with more than 20 years’ experience in economic development, most recently as Executive Director with Sanford Area Growth Alliance.
EDC Chairman Jeff Wilson said, “We are excited that Mike will be leading the economic development efforts of Chatham County. Our community is poised to grow, and we believe he is the ideal person to facilitate that growth. His experience, leadership, and vision align with the goals of Chatham County.”
“The EDC is a key strategic partner of Chatham County and its municipalities. We rely on the EDC to develop and implement a strategy for business attraction and retention as well as job creation in our community. We look forward to working with Mike in carrying out that strategy,” said County Manager Dan LaMontagne.
Michael Smith is an experienced economic development professional with more than 20 years serving in local organizations and with the NC Department of Commerce. At his most recent position in Lee County, he had significant success in business recruitment and product development. Smith has served as the President of the North Carolina Economic Development Association (NCEDA). He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a Master’s Degree in Geography with a concentration in Urban/Regional Planning from East Carolina University.
“I am honored to have been selected to serve as the next President of the Chatham County Economic Development Corporation. This is an exciting opportunity to work in a fast-growing area that has an amazing group of assets in place, including the Chatham Park live/work/play community, the 2,150-acre Triangle Innovation Point life science and advanced manufacturing park, and the 1,800 acre Chatham-Siler City Advanced Manufacturing mega site,” said Smith. He added, “I am grateful to have held a leadership position in Sanford where our team had a record setting year. I look forward to building on this regional momentum in a location that’s a part of the Research Triangle Region and the center point of the Carolina Core.”
Chatham County Economic Development Corporation is the lead economic development agency for Chatham County. The mission is to build on Chatham County’s strategic location between the Triad and Triangle regions, positioning Chatham as the preferred location for emerging growth companies. The organization’s policy-driven approach leads it to focus on targeted attraction, retention, and entrepreneurship to improve the lives of County residents. The EDC supports infrastructure improvements and preservation of Chatham County’s strong quality of place.
Smith began work at the EDC on January 25, 2021.