Black Diamond/Turner Valley Intermunicipal Economic Development Committee Members Appointed

Black Diamond and Turner Valley Councils are excited to announce the appointments of six members-at-large to the newly formed Intermunicipal Economic Development Committee (IEDC). The IEDC is tasked with assisting both municipalities accomplish common economic development goals by creating and implementing a strategy focused on business investment attraction and commercial growth.

Their appointments launch the next step in the economic collaboration between the towns built on a commitment to work together to maximize investment opportunities and marketing impact. The IEDC’s first order of business will involve working with contracted consultant MDB Insight to engage businesses and obtain a clear understanding of their needs and the potential opportunities in both communities.

Committee members were selected from a strong field of highly qualified and diverse applicants. Selection of the final six was a daunting task as each applicant possessed impressive skills and experience. The IEDC work group, represented by two Councillors from each municipality, vetted the applications and made recommendations to Council. Appointed members will serve three-year terms.

Black Diamond Mayor Ruth Goodwin stated, “We look forward to working with our newly formed Intermunicipal Economic Development Committee to strengthen and broaden our business community. The multi-talented members will bring a fresh vision to help guide our objectives to realized success. Council is eager to hear the proposals and plans of implementation from our committee over the course of the next three years. Working together with business, staff and our councils to improve and broaden our business community is the next step in our planned comprehensive collaboration with Turner Valley.”

Turner Valley Mayor Barry Crane commented, “The strength of our communities is broadly represented within this intermunicipal committee. They will work to link our business development initiatives and tourism objectives and will help align our common goals as one entity with their strengths, skills and experience. This collaboration will help increase civic pride in our region. On behalf of Council, I wish them the best of luck and look forward to seeing the results of their collaborative work and elebrating the success of the project.

The following Intermunicipal Economic Development Committee applicants were appointed:

David Farran: founder and president of Eau Claire Distillery, Mr. Farran possesses a MBA, he is a former vicepresident of Big Rock Brewery and the founder of Pipestone Travel Outfitters, a leading adventure travel packager and travel gear. He has extensive experience in growing and managing businesses, international marketing and finance.

Leslie Miller: Mr. Miller served as a member of the Black Diamond Economic Development Committee since 2014. He was the president of the Ottawa Tourism and Convention Authority and executive committee member of the Canadian Tourism Commission. He has extensive experience in developing strategic business partnerships and government relations.

Mark Muller: Owner and operator of the Country Food Mart for over 30 years, Mr. Muller is clearly experienced in the needs and opportunities of the region. He is a successful business owner well-versed in the local economy and is a strong supporter of community organizations.

Tarek Nemr: Owner and operator of the Blue Rock Gallery located in Black Diamond, Mr. Nemr is well experienced in retail and tourism marketing. He is an active member of the “Most Beautiful Art Tour of Alberta”, a collaborative group of art galleries and artists working together to draw large numbers of visitors to the communities over several tour dates.

Chelsea Vogel: Owner of two local businesses, Ms. Vogel assists other businesses with marketing project management. She has wide-ranging experience as an entrepreneur specializing in business development and promotion.

Matthew Wagstaff: Mr. Wagstaff is a co-owner in a local retail business, possessing extensive sales, financial and marketing skills. He is experience in working with a variety of organizations and stakeholders to plan, develop and complete community projects.