Jon Baggett Receives Designation of Certified Economic Developer

Summerville, South Carolina

February 4, 2013 – Jon Baggett, Dorchester County Economic Development
Director, recently earned the designation of Certified Economic Developer
(CEcD), a national recognition that denotes a mastery of principal skills in
economic development, professional attainment, and a commitment to personal and
professional growth. The CEcD exam was
administered by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) on
January 26th and 27th in Orlando, Florida at their winter
conference.

Leading up to his five-year role in economic development for
Dorchester County, Jon Baggett began his career as a Community Development
Manager for the South Carolina Department of Commerce after graduating from
Presbyterian College in 1999. In 2004,
he received his master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of
South Carolina.

Upon joining Dorchester County in 2008, Mr. Baggett’s duties
as Economic Development Director have included the recruitment of new and
expanding business that resulted in record-high numbers for two consecutive
years during the economic recession. Mr.
Baggett has also made significant strides in product development through
infrastructure projects to increase Dorchester County’s inventory list of
available sites and buildings. Achievements have included the completion of the County’s first "Class-A"
industrial park that will attract industries in the bioscience sector, as well
as developing a "shovel-ready" site in St. George to increase the number of
jobs for Upper Dorchester County residents.

Other initiatives established under his direction have
included the creation of a Business Retention and Expansion program; increased
marketing efforts to reach a global audience; the development of the County’s
first Strategic Plan for Economic Development; and the growth of a retail
recruitment program.

Mr. Baggett’s other professional designations consist of
Certified Economic Development Finance Professional by the National Development
Council, as well as a South Carolina Certified Economic Developer by the South
Carolina Economic Developers’ Association (SCEDA). Recently, he was named by Development
Counsellors International (DCI) as part of the organization’s "40 Under 40"
annual awards competition. He is also a
member of IEDC, SCEDA, and the Southern Economic Development Council
(SEDC). He currently serves as a member
of the Trident Workforce Investment Board.

"This certification means not only great things for Jon, but
also for Dorchester County," said Dorchester County Council Chairman Bill Hearn. "With this designation, we are now set apart
as a County that possesses the knowledge and expertise to assist in all aspects
of economic development to meet the needs of new and existing business. Well-done and congratulations, Jon!"

"I want to congratulate and recognize Jon as he reaches a career
milestone by achieving this significant accreditation from IEDC as a Certified
Economic Developer," said Jason Ward, Dorchester County Administrator. "He is a valuable asset to Dorchester County,
and through his efforts, he is helping to build a strong foundation for our economic
development future."

The CEcD designation recognizes qualified and dedicated
practitioners in the economic development field and sets the standard of
excellence within the profession. Candidates must pass a rigorous and comprehensive three-part, two-day
examination that tests a practitioner’s knowledge, as well as proficiency and
judgment in the key areas of economic development. These targeted areas include business
retention and expansion, marketing, finance, workforce development, community
development, real estate, strategic planning, and management.

As highly competent economic development practitioners,
Certified Economic Developers work with public officials, business leaders, and
community members to create leadership to build upon and maximize the economic
development sector. Excellence in the
economic development profession improves the well-being, quality of life, and overall
opportunities for individuals, businesses, and communities. There are currently 1,297 active CEcD’s in
the United States.

The International Economic Development Council is the
premiere organization for the economic development profession. Serving over 4,600 members, IEDC is the
world’s largest professional membership organization providing a diversity of
economic development services, including research and advisory services,
conferences, professional development, and legislative tracking.  IEDC provides economic developers with the
information and tools they need to build local economies. The organization also strives to draw upon
and increase the collective expertise and influence of its diverse
membership. For more information about
IEDC membership and upcoming events, please visit their website at www.iedconline.org to learn more.

About Dorchester
County Economic Development

Dorchester County
Economic Development is the organization responsible for growing and retaining
business in the County. Its mission is
to work to create and support an environment that welcomes business, and helps
companies to grow and succeed over the long-term. This ultimately will increase the standard of
living for all of Dorchester County’s citizens by providing more job
opportunities with higher skills and better wages.

About IEDC

The
International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is a non-profit membership
organization dedicated to helping economic developers do their job more
effectively. IEDC’s overall mission is
to raise the profile of the economic development profession. As the world’s largest membership
organization serving this dynamic industry, IEDC members can create more
high-quality jobs, develop more vibrant communities, and generally improve the
quality of life in their regions.

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