We’re Hiring – Director, Center for Business & Innovation

Thurston Economic Development Council – Center for Business & Innovation

Position Title:  Director, Center for Business & Innovation

Position Purpose:  The Thurston Economic Development Council is seeking a full-time Director for its Center for Business & Innovation (CB&I).  This position will direct and oversee the array of services offered in the CB&I and will work to ensure a strong collaborative and partnership approach amongst the resources and organizations of the CB&I.  This strong collaborative approach provides a strong focused delivery of business and technical assistance, and resources development to the client or business.

Position Type:   Full-time salaried position.  Position reports to the Executive Director.

Salary Range:  This position has a salary range of $85,000 – $100,000 annual, depending up qualifications.  The EDC provides a competitive benefits package that includes vacation and sick leave, medical/vision/dental and several options of retirement benefit.

About the Organization:  The Thurston Economic Development Council (EDC) is a private non-profit organization, governed by a 25-member Board of Directors.  As the lead economic development organization in Thurston County, our mission is to create a vital and sustainable economy throughout the county and region that supports the livelihood and values of our residents.  We do this by:

  • Connecting local businesses with experts and resources that help them remain competitive,
  • Creating and delivering strategic messages that attract new investment into our community,
  • Working with our community partners to enhance our collective prosperity and encourage our economic future,
  • Participating regionally to ensure that Thurston County plays an appropriate role on the regional economic development stage.

Co-located with the EDC is the Center for Business & Innovation (CB&I), a separate non-profit organization that provides business start-up and planning assistance; and government contracting assistance.  The EDC is the statewide program lead for the Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) and is home to the Washington Center for Women in Business (WCWB).

Background:  Two prominent organizations, the Thurston EDC and South Puget Sound Community College, have combined resources and physical locations of their existing business training, counseling, coaching and technical assistance into a single “Center for Business & Innovation” located in Lacey, WA.  These two organizations have a history of success, both independently of and collaboratively with each other to serve businesses in every stage of development, from start-up to growth to market leadership.  The combined physical location facilitates heightened collaboration and coordination of services for clients, and regional community and

economic development partners. The incumbent will have a leadership role in the region’s economic diversification strategies, and the further development and building of the community’s entrepreneurial systems.

Vision for the Center for Business & Innovation Center:  The vision for the CB&I is to catalyze the development and growth of high-wage, high-value, private sector companies in the South Puget Sound region by providing relevant, timely business services including training, counseling, coaching and technical assistance all under one roof.  The CB&I will focus on businesses and entrepreneurs in the clusters defined within the region.

Job Description – Center for Business & Innovation Director

This position will direct and oversee the array of services offered in the CB&I and will work to ensure a strong collaborative and partnership approach amongst the resources and organizations providing a focused delivery approach to the client, or business.  The Director will be based in Lacey, WA at the CB&I.  The Director will be an employee of the Thurston Economic Development Council (EDC) and will report to the EDC Executive Director.  In recognition of the collaborative nature of this position, both the EDC and SPSCC will contribute equally to the funding of this position.  The Director will also be accountable to the CB&I’s Board of Directors.  The incumbent’s success will be predicated upon their ability to understand and collaboratively move a positive workforce and entrepreneurial agenda incorporating the resources established by SPSCC, e.g. internships, cooperatives, and curriculum.  This position will have a strong role in working with partner organizations and agencies – and will have an intended focus of dedicating a strong presence outside of the physical confines of the CB&I. The CB&I Director will:

  • Direct the business services of the CB&I, through close collaboration with the EDC and SPSCC, by working with the managers/directors of co-located resource providers, currently including:
    • Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
    • SBA Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE)
    • Washington Center for Women in Business (WCWB)
    • Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)
    • Self-Employment Assistance Program Provider (SEAP)
    • Thurston Asset Building Coalition (TABC)
    • ScaleUp curriculum
    • Lacey MakerSpace
    • Customized training for growing employers
    • Curriculum for budding entrepreneurs (certificates and degrees)
    • College offices and programs
    • Others that are strategically added from time to time
    • (This position will be the direct lead for the WCWB and other technical services programs that could be added as strategies are developed and implemented.)
  • Advocate/coordinate the technology and related needs of resource providers within the CB&I.
  • Manage and maintain a strong knowledge and advocacy for current employment and business practices regarding federal, state, and local business regulations and requirements.
  • Put in place and direct appropriate administrative systems to ensure efficient and effective delivery of services.
  • Establish and maintain a collaborative intake process at the CB&I that ensures clients are directed to the most appropriate and useful services and resource providers.
  • Collaborate with regional partners and business resource providers to focus on and drive industry growth within the identified strategic economic clusters that already exist within the region, and provide strong prospects for community wealth building.
  • Position the CB&I for a leadership role in accelerating business success and industry growth by building strong connections to regional businesses and responding to their needs.
  • Develop and grow the brand identity and success of the CB&I by representing it in public before community groups and leaders, and ensure effective marketing and outreach efforts.
  • Work with community partners to leverage resources and explore additional funding opportunities to grow the CB&I and its effectiveness.
  • Evaluate and track the successes and lessons learned.
  • Work in cooperation with the EDC’s Finance Director to create and manage budgets for the CB&I.
  • Work to ensure that the programs and resources of the CB&I are well represented throughout the region (inclusive originally) of the five counties of the south Puget Sound region; these being Mason, Grays Harbor, Pacific, Lewis and Thurston counties.

Qualifications:  This position incumbent shall have a strong background, either academic or via direct knowledge of entrepreneurial systems, business operations, and market/product innovation in the private sector.

To apply:  Interested parties should tender a cover letter and resume to [email protected] by the end of business of June 20, 2019.