On July 21, Andy Karellas, the Executive Director of the State International Development Organizations (SIDO), moderated a panel on how county leaders can engage in international economic development at the 2022 National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference in Denver, Colorado. The annual conference is the largest meeting of county officials from across the country, where over 1500 participants convened to discuss policies and best practices.
The session was part of the Community, Economic and Workforce Development Policy Steering Committee who is chaired by the Honorable Joseph Wood, from Washington County, Arkansas. The moderated panel included Commissioner Martha Schrader from Clackamas County Oregon, Commissioner Stan Vanderwerf from El Paso County Colorado, and Commissioner Kathryn Starkey from Pasco County Florida.
The commissioners shared best practices on how they promote international engagement, including promoting U.S. exports, attracting foreign direct investment, and further integrating international trade into their county and region’s broader economic development strategy.
In addition, the panel highlighted the recent work from the Center of Regional Economic Competitiveness around “Enhancing State and Local EDD Engagement to Support COVID-19 Recovery and Resilience.” Additionally, the distinguished panel provided county leaders with information and resources to better engage in international economic development, including coordinating the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategies (CEDS) with their economic development districts and state, and through the USACompetes.com website.