Investing in the Future: 2019 Development Summit

Development Summit (3).png

Join us for Investing in the Future: A Summit on Community Development in Southeast Ohio on Thursday, August 29 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This event will bring together community leaders, elected officials, practitioners and more to explore the topic of investing in community development for the future of southeast Ohio.

From land banks to tax incentives to manufacturing and more, this one-day event will feature an overview of current challenges as well as innovative solutions highlighting real work being accomplished on the ground to improve the lives of residents in southeast Ohio.

Lunch will be provided to all attendees, courtesy of Special Occasions Catering in Marietta.

Registration is $35 for the general public. Members of the General Policy Council and/or Regional Advisory Council will receive a discounted rate, out of gratitude for their service to our organization. A discount code may be accessed by emailing

Online registration is now CLOSED. Please email if you’d like to register for the summit.

2019 DEVELOPMENT SUMMIT Speakers & TOpics

Keynote: The State of Rural Appalachia in Southeast Ohio

Mike Jacoby, Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth

Mike Jacoby is the President and CEO of the Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth (APEG).  APEG is the JobsOhio regional non-profit affiliate organization charged with supporting and coordinating economic development across 25 counties in southern and eastern Ohio.  

Mike has 25 years of economic development experience in Ohio at the local, regional and state level. Professional highlights include the recruitment of Halliburton to Zanesville, which resulted in nearly 1,000 jobs, and the recruitment of Fanatics to Frazeysburg, which resulted in over 200 jobs and peak season employment approaching 2,000. Mike will address the State of Rural Appalachia in Southeast Ohio.

Incentivizing Strategic Investments

Andy Kuhn, Southeast Ohio Port Authority

Often times, our dreams for development in our communities are bigger than it seems our wallets can manage. But, thanks to a variety of public financing options, community development can be financed through strategic considerations and varied approaches to providing gap financing. Specifically, Tax Increment Financing (TIF) and Special Improvement Districts (SIDs) may be utilized.

Opportunity Zones 101

Dr. Jason Jolley, Ohio University

Opportunity Zones, created in the 2017 Tax Cut and Jobs Act, encourage long-term investments in low-income urban and rural areas nationwide. In Ohio, 73 of its 88 counties have Opportunity Zones and in southeast Ohio, all eight counties have Opportunity Zones for a total of 12 in the region. So, what are Opportunity Zones? How can we benefit from them? And how can we attract investments with Opportunity Zones to strengthen our communities?

Utilizing Land Banks as a Tool for Economic Growth

Jim Rokakis, Western Reserve Land Conservancy

Land Banks are tools used by governments or nonprofits to convert vacant, abandoned, and tax-delinquent properties into productive use. By understanding how land banks can be beneficial and how to utilize them as tools for economic growth, communities can incentivize private investment and strengthen local economies at the same time.

The Future of Manufacturing in Appalachian Ohio

Susan Foltz & Dorinda Byers, Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership

For the first time in history, four distinct generations are working side by side in the workforce. By recognizing the differences between these four generations, manufacturers can customize their recruitment and management styles to improve group dynamics and job satisfaction. Happier employees equal increased productivity, which ultimately leads to a greater return on investment.

interested in sponsoring the DEVELOPMENT summit?

click here for more information or reach out to