(Seguin) -- When a community lands a large manufacturing or business deal, sometimes the people behind the scenes -- the ones doing the legwork, negotiations and handshakes are often not recognized.
This year, however, all that has changed thanks to the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). In commemoration of its 90 year anniversary as the largest professional membership organization for economic developers, the IEDC has created Economic Development Week (May 8-14).
Taking part in the celebration this week is the city of Seguin and Seguin Economic Development Corporation (SEDC).
SEDC Executive Director Terry Trevino says for her staff, economic development is more than just bringing in the dollars. She says it's about improving the quality of life all those in a community.
"In my 17 years of being an economic development professional -- the week, the actual profession what we do -- has never been celebrated. We've never been honored as a week. We have conferences and we have awards for our accomplishments, individually that we submit, but never for the actual profession. Celebrating what we do for our community and saying kind of thank you to all the economic developers that are out there every day just working to better lives," said Trevino.
Economic developers, according to Trevino, are charged with generating economic growth, creating better jobs for residents and facilitating an improved quality of life. She says the industry remains as complex, challenging and rewarding as ever.
"Everyday, 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, I can honestly say that as the economic developer for this city, I give it 100 percent all the time. There's nothing that I do on a daily basis where I won't drive by a sign or an empty building and say we need to sell that or just think about when I'm at a restaurant and I wonder -- how we can grow this? Companies that are going in around the world, I wonder how I can try to attract that kind of company? So, it's all the time. It's constant," said Trevino.
Trevino says the celebration includes those at the city level, the SEDC Board of Directors, each SEDC staff member and those citizens who work hard each day to make sure that all areas of the community are doing their part to remain strong. She says it's a week of not only celebration but of awareness.
"It's a humbling week for me, in particular and I believe for my staff as well. We're not really used to people really kind of knowing what we do because as everybody always says, what they do is a secret and then, we sort of fall into that too. We become a secret. They really don't know what we do. This is a week --I think it's to pull myself and other professionals around the world out of that shell and to be recognized for what we do as a person, what we sacrifice as individuals and our accomplishments as professionals -- what we do even in our own community of Seguin, Texas, 30,000 population -- look what we've managed to recruit. The companies, the industries, the people, the type of economy that we're growing, it's just amazing and you can see it everywhere. I think there's dust all over town, right, but It's amazing. All of that, every single thing going on in the city, that's all economic development," said Trevino.
As part of the celebration, the SEDC earlier this week held a special Live, Work, Play and Stay in Seguin event for local manufacturers. Seguin Mayor Don Keil also presented a special proclamation applauding all efforts in doing business. The SEDC staff also continues to take part in a special media marketing campaign highlighting the office on Facebook and Twitter.
“The Seguin Economic Development Corporation has been the driving force behind the extraordinary growth and prosperity Seguin has enjoyed over the past two decades. Without the exceptional performance of the SEDC, we would not be the thriving and vibrant community we are today. We are pleased and proud to proclaim May 8th -14th as Economic Development Week in honor of the SEDC, its staff, and its board. We offer our sincere gratitude to the SEDC for keeping our great City of Seguin the economic envy of virtually every community in Texas.” said Seguin’s Mayor Don Keil.
The Seguin Economic Development Corporation was created in 1994 as a type “4A” Corporation under state law. Seguin Economic Development has worked to promote Seguin as a premiere destination for businesses looking to expand or relocate.
Voter created, SEDC receives a portion of Seguin’s sales tax to market Seguin and provide incentives to industries such as manufacturing, biotechnical, distribution, energy and technology. SEDC also works with existing companies in Seguin and new businesses that are looking to expand their operations.