The Economic Development Association of Alabama (EDAA) recently wrapped up a three-day winter conference which brought more than 300 members together in Birmingham. The event hosted guest speakers from across the state, including Governor Kay Ivey and Alabama Department of Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield. Attendees experienced breakout sessions, heard updates on economic development initiatives and discussed best practices in recruitment of industry.
During the three-day conference, a special award was given to a select economic developer who demonstrates the highest ideals of professionalism and character within the economic development profession. The award is given in honor of David R. Echols, who served as senior project manager for the Alabama Economic Development Office and set the professional standard for economic development in the state. Echols’ legacy continues through this award. This year’s recipient of the Dave Echols Award is Jeremy Nails, president and CEO of the Morgan County Economic Development Association.
“Jeremy Nails is an asset to Morgan County and our state, and this prestigious award should recognize the hard work and leadership he has shown for economic development in Alabama,” said Jim Searcy, executive director of EDAA.
Pictured left to right: Cynthia Echols, Ted Clem, Hollie Pegg, Bob Smith, Jeremy Nails and April Gray are shown at the Economic Development Association of Alabama’s Winter Conference congratulating Nails on being presented the Dave Echols Award.
The Economic Development Association of Alabama also recognized one member as the Young Professional of the Year. This award recognizes a young professional dedicated to improving the community and beyond. This year’s recipient of the Young Professional Award is Penny Townson, vice president of the Morgan County Economic Development Association.
“Penny Townson’s significant community impact did not go unnoticed this year. This award recognizes a young professional who made a significant impact on the young professional community and has showcased a dedication to creating a vibrant community that attracts and retains young professionals,” said Jim Searcy, executive director of EDAA.
Pictured left to right: Morgan County Commission Chairman Ray Long, Penny Townson, vice president, MCEDA and Jeremy Nails, president and CEO, MCEDA.
About Economic Development Association of Alabama
Founded in the early 1960s, the Economic Development Association of Alabama (EDAA) is a membership-based organization focused on promoting economic growth in Alabama. Economic development professionals throughout the state, along with individuals and companies in related fields, work together with the EDAA staff and board of directors to help positively influence state legislation and industrial growth within the state.
The Economic Development Association of Alabama (EDAA) is a network of Alabama economic development professionals. Currently, EDAA has 500 members, including directors and staff members from local economic development associations, as well as other individuals involved in economic growth in Alabama. Our members enjoy the benefits of networking opportunities, professional development and legislative representation.