Employment Opportunity: President/CEO Regional Economic Development Organization

Employment Status: Full Time/Salaried
Reports To: Board of Directors


The purpose of One East Kentucky (OEK) is to strategically promote economic and community development across 9 Counties in Kentucky’s Appalachian Region with the express intent of diversifying the economy of the area through a strong focus on recruitment of new industry.  Although OEK is a 501(c)3 non-profit that is privately funded and led, our mission involves maintaining strong relationships among local, state, and federal elected officials and governmental bodies.  Additionally, OEK engages with like-minded organizations across the territory in strategic partnerships to encourage good decision making and growth.


The President and CEO is responsible for leading the economic development strategy and its implementation throughout the OEK region.  They are responsible for oversight of daily operations, supervising personnel, and maintaining good communication with the Board of Directors.  The President and CEO leads the OEK vision into an annual Program of Work and manages execution of the organizational goals, metrics, and budget.

Duties and Responsibilities included but not limited to:

  • Setting a vision and developing innovative strategies for economic development and diversification
  • Having a primary focus on marketing, business recruitment, and industrial development within the OEK strategic plan
  • Selling the community as a preferred location for business to regional, national, and global audiences
  • Assisting communities and industrial authorities with strategic investments that attract new business as well as negotiating deals for job creation opportunities
  • Building and maintaining positive relationships with local, regional, and state economic development partners, leaders, and appointed/elected officials
  • Assisting existing business with needs and growth opportunities
  • Working with local governments and managing OEK staff who may have that primary responsibility
  • Strategize opportunities to assist communities directly with support and tools they can utilize for local growth, quality of life, and community development

Competencies, Education and Experience Required:

This position requires a strong candidate with experience as well as education in the full facet of economic and community development, especially business recruitment and managing site visits from private sector employers.

  • Bachelor’s degree and/or graduate of University of Oklahoma Economic Development Institute (preferred but not required, as experience is vitally important in this role)
  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience in community & economic development
  • Strong managerial and leadership skills
  • Effective communication and negotiation skills
  • Ability to provide effective presentations to private sector businesses, local government, civic groups, state officials, and media regarding OEK activities and strategies
  • Extensive experience/training in communications, marketing, and public speaking
  • Experience in implementing strategic plans toward desired results
  • Knowledge of business and rural municipalities as well as obstacles/challenges to both
  • Successful experience working with a board of directors and multiple industrial authorities
  • Experience in managing and fundraising for a contribution-based organization
  • Experience working with higher education institutions toward workforce readiness and training
  • Successful project management experience
  • Ability to analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, project potential outcomes, and implement recommendations in support of the overall economic vision of OEK
  • Knowledge of industry clusters, economic growth projections, statistical data analysis, supply chain for key industries, infrastructure needs, and tax incentive programs is preferred

Additional Requirements

Common out of state travel by vehicle and/or air and “after hours” are required as well as extended overnight stays for out-of-town events and meetings.  Work includes the ability to sit and/or stand for periods in an office as well as work at a computer for extended periods of time with the ability to also adapt to various work environments

Equal Opportunity

One East Kentucky is an Equal Opportunity Employer


Competitive compensation based upon experience


Residency within the OEK region is required by the successful candidate.  Reasonable accommodation may be made for time and expense related to potential relocation

References & Background Check

The finalists for this position will undergo background checks that may include criminal records, driving records, education completion, personality profile assessments, drug testing, credit check, and references from prior positions

How to Apply

Submit a cover letter, resume, and references by COB Friday April 22nd.  Must be sent electronically to James Ayers at jayers@fsb4me.com

For More Information about OEK: www.oneeastky.com