Here's the latest from your friends at the Florida Economic Development Council.
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In this edition:

  • New Conference Details
  • Regional Forums Updates
  • An Advocacy Update
  • Members Corner
  • and more

Register for #FEDC20

You can now register for the 2020 Florida Economic Development Conference and take advantage of the early bird rate. For organizations with multiple attendees, you can now make a single payment for your team. You will still need to register each attendee individually for name tag and other purposes.

You can also reserve your hotel room. Act today!

Finally, be sure to say thanks to our conference sponsors when you see them. They are are the right side of our conference-related webpages.

FEDC Regional Forums Occurring Across Florida

We want to provide special recognition of Enterprise Florida and CareerSource Florida for their vision and support of FEDC’s Annual Regional Forums.

These forums bring together Florida’s economic, workforce and community developers to address best practices in improving local communities and elevating Florida’s global competitiveness through job creation, talent development, and capital investment. Three regions met in November: Northwest, Northeast, and Southwest. 

Special thanks to our forum hosts: PowerSouth, JAXUSA Partnership, and Babcock Ranch/Kitson & Partners.

A Busy Advocacy Season Ahead

December 9 will begin the sixth and final interim committee week before the 2020 session begins on January 14.

The National Association of Workforce Boards ( will convene in Panama City on January 8-10 around Disaster Planning, Recovery and Economic Resilience.

The International Economic Development Council (  will host the annual Leadership Conference in Tampa  February 9-11.

FEDC will launch #FLEconDevWeek20 on February 6 via a press event held at the Florida Capitol. The annual social media campaign showcasing the impact of Economic, Workforce and Community Development will occur February 9-15. You can access ideas for the week-long awareness campaign here.

QTI Reauthorization – CALL TO ACTION

SB 922 by Senator Joe Gruters (R) Sarasota supports the reauthorization. A related HB 779 by Representative Spencer Roach (R) Fort Myers has also been filed. FEDC has created this Myths vs Facts document to assist you in your outreach to legislators in the coming weeks. Let us know how your conversations are going. We will keep you posted as the bills travel through various committees.
Governor Ron DeSantis announces his 2020-2021 A Bolder, Better, Brighter Future Budget

Get the highlights related to economic, workforce and community development here.
Additional Bills of Interest

S 126 Sales and Use Tax – E Fairness bill by Senator Gruters
Last Action: 10/15/2019 Now in Finance and Tax
H 159    Sales and Use Tax             Clemons               Similar
Last Action: 9/25/2019 H Referred to Ways and Means Committee; Commerce Committee; Appropriations Committee
S 530 Entertainment Industry   Gruters
Last Action: 12/2/2019 On Committee agenda-- Commerce and Tourism, 12/10/19, 10:00 am, 110 Senate Building
H 497 Entertainment Industry    Buchanan            Similar
Last Action: 11/7/2019 H Referred to Workforce Development and Tourism Subcommittee; Transportation and Tourism Appropriations Subcommittee; Commerce Committee

S 576 Research and Development Tax Credit
Last Action: 11/13/2019 Now in Finance and Tax
S 130 Hutson and H 71 Santiago Florida Job Growth Grant Fund  
Last Action: 11/18/2019 S Now in Appropriations


If you have any questions, please contact Michelle Bauer, CEcD, Vice-Chair of Advocacy & Communications at or Beth Cicchetti, CEcD, Executive Director at

Members Corner

Please congratulate three of Florida's new CEcDs:
  • Frank Calascione, CEcD Sumter County Economic Development
  • Lynn Kroesen, CEcD Hillsborough County Economic Development
  • Christopher Roog, CEcD City of West Palm Beach Economic Development

International Economic Development Council Elects Board Members for 2020

Lindsey Kimball, CEcD and Bill Cronin to Begin Serving Term on Board of Directors in January

The Board of Directors of the International Economic Development
Council (IEDC) has elected Lindsey Kimball, Director of Economic Development for Hillsborough County and
Bill Cronin, President & CEO of the Pasco Economic Development Council, to serve on the IEDC Board of Directors.

The nominations took place during IEDC's 2019 Annual Conference, which was held in Indianapolis, IN from October 13-16, 2019. Their terms begins on January 1, 2020.

"We look forward to Lindsey Kimball’s leadership as a member on the Board of Directors. Lindsey has previously served at the advisory committee level, in addition to her years of professional economic development practice. We welcome her and know that her new participation on the board will ensure great accomplishments in 2020 and beyond."

"We look forward to Bill Cronin’s leadership as a member of the Board of Directors. His appointment is timely as IEDC heads to Tampa for the 2020 Leadership Summit. We look forward to having his voice on our board. His new leadership role will ensure great accomplishments in 2020 and beyond." – Jeffrey Finkle, CEcD, President and CEO of IEDC.

See the entire press release for Lindsey and Bill.


FEDC Board Member receives recognition


FEDC Board member Andra Cornelius, CEcD was recently recognized by the FSU College of Education as a Distinguished Alumni in a ceremony held Friday, Oct 25th. We are very proud of this accomplishment in her career.
CareerSource Brevard Logo

Featured Member - CareerSource Brevard

In the past few years, CareerSource Brevard (CSB) has engaged in Sector Strategy initiatives in multiple industries. Through convenings, surveys, and personal interactions with industry leaders, they have identified a large and growing “soft skills gap” that is negatively impacting both job placements and retention rates. CSB was compelled to address this concern by proposing a soft skills pilot grant to focus on Brevard County’s workforce.

On 11/22/2017, CSB was awarded a grant from CareerSource Florida and the State of Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity. CSB engaged in a one-year soft skills pilot training program focused on competency-based and credentialed training to improve overall customer satisfaction, produce better hiring results, and increase employee retention rates.

CSB dedicated its efforts on providing this training to eligible career seekers with barriers, with the anticipation of enrolling and training 500 and credentialing 425 unemployed or underemployed WIOA Adult and Dislocated Worker participants.

While collaborating with community partners, a panel of HR professionals from both local HR society chapters (Space Coast HR Association and South Brevard Society for HR Management) was formed to help in the process of selecting the best soft skills training for WIOA customers in Brevard. The SHRM panelists were instrumental in the selection process and their responses lead to the final choice - WIN Learning Soft Skills Training.  Read more here.


Mickie Birdsall Scholar

Mariana Leslie works for Pinellas County Schools as an Apprenticeships and Work-Based Learning Specialist. Her primary role is to develop internship and apprenticeship opportunities for students and to connect business partners with school advisory boards. 

Mariana graduated from the University of Florida with dual master's degrees in management and international business. Outside of work, she enjoys going on adventures with her twin daughters, traveling with her husband and attempting to salsa dance.


New Sustaining Investor

We want to thank and welcome our newest sustaining investor/member, GIS WebTech!

Event Calendar

Check out important upcoming events on our events calendar.


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