EDCNCI names new executive director

Gina Czubachowski has 10 years economic development experience

Gina Czubachowski, executive director North Central Illinois Economic Development Corporation

The Economic Development Corporation of North Central Illinois named Gina Czubachowski as its new executive director.

Czubachowski has been with EDCNCI since it commenced in 2016 as the administrative manager. Czubachowski has been member of the local chapter, Illinois Valley Society for Human Resource Management as well as the former president for the Ottawa Network of Young eXecutives. Previously, she worked as a business advisor at the Small Business Development Center at Illinois Valley Community College. She brings more than 10 years of economic development experience. She also holds an masters of business administration and bachelor of finance from Illinois State University and graduated from IVCC. Czubachowski is North Central Illinois native and is a part-time business adjunct faculty instructor at IVCC.

Czubachowski most recently graduated from the University of Oklahoma Economic Development Institute on Oct. 28, 2021 at the OU EDI Fall 2021 session. OU EDI is an intensive 117-hour certificate program which provides a broad spectrum of advanced education for the economic development professional.

“OU EDI is the premier organization dedicated to training economic development professionals,” said Mark James, dean. “These graduates represent some of the finest economic development practitioners in the U.S. working to support their local communities.”

OU EDI classes focus on three major core areas including: business retention and expansion, real estate and credit analysis, as well as areas of concentration in marketing, entrepreneurship and managing economic development organization.

During the December EDCNCI board of directors meeting, the directors have been reviewing the last five year outcomes and progress and efforts made by the staff to market the region. The board made the decision it would like to promote an internal candidate to be the next leader.

“We are excited to elevate Gina to executive director,” said EDCNCI Chairman John McCormick. “Gina has the skills necessary to continue moving our region forward and meet our main objective to bring quality employers to our region. She has been an integral part of EDCNCI since inception and has been rooted in the region and is ready to work with our investors.”

The promotion follows the resignation of former president and CEO Mike Kirchhoff.

Although 2021 was challenged by the pandemic, the EDCNCI received 105 leads in and of those leads they were able to submit properties for 40 of those leads.

“Our organization continues to receive many great project leads; we submit the properties that fit the project requirements,” Czubachowski said. “The challenge for our region is responding to leads that want an existing building. Project leads for existing buildings, will turnaround much faster. When it comes to projects seeking land and willing to construct a building, those take more time and due diligence, and we must be patient and persistent with those project leads. Our local properties have generated several site visits during the last five years and while we work toward a win, site selectors have been to our region and seen our properties and compliment our region and the sites.”

EDCNCI online presence includes its website www.northcentraillinois.org. The group also manages a page on the social media platform Linkedin.