(Press release) The Kewaunee County Economic Development Corporation (KCEDC) recently hired Richard Baker as their new Executive Director. He began his duties on January 7, 2019.
Baker brings over 10 years of economic development and tourism experience. He most recently was the Community Development Coordinator for Mille Lacs County, Minnesota where he planned, coordinated and facilitated development opportunities between cities, businesses and the county and wrote multiple grants for projects. He managed several major economic development studies for the county, including a broadband feasibility study, a tourism visitor profile study, impact of the arts and culture study and a retail gap analysis study, and collaborated on a seven county regional housing study. In 2016 he served as the President of GPS 45:93, a 5-county regional nonprofit economic development organization in east central Minnesota, leading them through a reorganization process. Baker was also an active volunteer in several economic development related organizations including: serving as the Vice Chair for the Central Minnesota Workforce Development Board; a member of the Minnesota Design Team, which works with small communities on downtown redevelopment; and the District 1 Planning Commission of the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks & Trails Commission.
“My wife and I are excited to make the move to Kewaunee County,” Baker said. “We have always enjoyed the area and this opportunity allows me to utilize my nonprofit skills and experiences to grow the KCEDC organization and the Kewaunee County economy, create jobs, and increase the tax base. I am looking forward to meeting with the community leaders and business owners over the next few months and learning about their concerns and assisting them with their needs.”
Prior to Mille Lacs County, Baker worked as an Executive Director for the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce in Boone, Iowa where he was involved in hosting the Farm Progress Show and promoting the IMCA Super Nationals. And previously to that, he served as the Executive Director for the Keweenaw Peninsula Chamber of Commerce in Houghton, Michigan where he chaired the Copper Country National Scenic Byways committee, hosted an In-Fisherman Super Pro-Am Tournament, helped organize an International Migratory Bird Day Festival in Copper Harbor and was involved with the marketing committee for Main Street Calumet, and the downtown redevelopment and park development committees for the City of Houghton.
Baker holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations with a minor in Economics and certificates in Economic Development and Nonprofit Organization Management.
KCEDC Board Chair, Lynie Vincent said, “I’m excited we have a new executive director of KCEDC. There are numerous projects we currently are working on where Richard’s experience with broadband and workforce development will be of great value to our investors”
The Kewaunee County Economic Development Corporation works pro-actively to retain, expand, develop and attract businesses that strengthen the economy of Kewaunee County.