I come from a small border town called San Luis, 25 minutes from Yuma, Arizona. My interest in Economic Development began while pursuing my Masters of Public Administration at the University of Arizona. I commissioned into the United States Marine Corps after my first year of graduate education in which I am currently a First Lieutenant. I went back to finish my second year of the MPA program where I took a course called, Tools for the 21st Century in Public Management and Economic Development, taught by Assistant Professor and E.D. Specialist Heath Vescovi-Chiordi.
Through his class, I found great interest in the field and had the opportunity to meet the Town of Sahuarita's E.D. Manager, Victor Gonzalez. After finding out more about the Town, I became an intern with Victor and E.D. Specialist Michael Jansen. Both Victor and Michael provided me with the opportunity to be part of some great projects that included identifying prospects for their Sahuarita Advanced Manufacturing Technology Engineering Center (SAMTEC) where a 15,000 nationwide company search was conducted and finalized to five selectees and developing a dashboard with indicators to measure success in economic development.
While working on these projects, Victor and Michael introduced me to AAED through a luncheon, which only increased my interest in the field. Thanks to a great support group with the Town of Sahuarita and Economic Development course in my MPA program, I was able to gain a position with the City of Casa Grande with Director, Richard Wilkie. I am excited to be part of AAED and its Fall Forum and Professional Education committee. I look forward to working with everyone!