Festa earns Certified Economic Developer designation from IEDC

RICHMOND, Va. – Grace Festa, Business Development Manager at the Greater Richmond Partnership, Inc. (GRP), earned the designation of Certified Economic Developer (CEcD), an international recognition that denotes a mastery of skills in economic development, professional attainment and a commitment to personal and professional growth.

Grace Festa, CEcD

“I’d like to personally welcome Grace as one of the 1,100 economic development professionals who hold the CEcD designation,” said Tracye McDaniel, chair of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) Board of Directors.

After joining the GRP a decade ago as a masters-level intern, Festa now juggles her responsibilities recruiting businesses with coordinating the Business First Greater Richmond program, which assists local economic development offices in expansions and retention.

“I’m proud of Grace’s hard work and dedication to the economic development field, as the CEcD sets a high standard of excellence in the economic development profession,” said Jennifer Wakefield, Interim President and CEO of GRP.

The CEcD designation from IEDC recognizes qualified and dedicated practitioners in the economic development profession. Candidates must pass a rigorous and comprehensive examination, which has three parts and spans two days.

Festa holds a master’s degree in urban and regional planning from Virginia Commonwealth University and bachelor’s from the University of Connecticut.

About the International Economic Development Council

The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is a non-profit membership organization serving economic developers. With more than 5,000 members, IEDC is the largest organization of its kind. Economic developers promote economic well-being and quality of life for their communities, by creating, retaining and expanding jobs that facilitate growth, enhance wealth and provide a stable tax base. From public to private, rural to urban, and local to international, IEDC’s members are engaged in the full range of economic development experience. Given the breadth of economic development work, our members are employed in a wide variety of settings including local, state, provincial and federal governments, public-private partnerships, chambers of commerce, universities and a variety of other institutions. IEDC’s members create high-quality jobs, develop vibrant communities and improve the quality of life in their regions. www.iedcONLINE.org.

About the GRP

The Greater Richmond Partnership, Inc. (GRP) is the lead economic development organization for the City of Richmond and counties of Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico in Virginia. GRP recruits companies from all over the globe which provide employment opportunities and taxable capital investment for the community. For more information, visit www.grpva.com.

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