Magnet comparing resumes of executive director applicants

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The search for the area's lead economic developer is moving forward now that the deadline for candidates to submit their resumes has passed.

More than 25 applicants turned in resumes by the May 1 deadline and are under consideration to become Cape Girardeau Area Magnet's new executive director, according to search committee member Barbara Lohr, who is also mayor of Jackson. There is a mixture of local candidates and several from out of state, she said.

Lohr, Danny Essner, executive vice president and senior lender at Capaha Bank, and Moe Sandfort, former president of Bank of Missouri, have been charged by the full search committee of the business recruitment organization to screen the applications received and select finalists.

"This is important for the whole area so we are taking it very, very seriously," Lohr said.

The current economic development environment is intensely competitive, Essner said.

"There's a small number of businesses looking to relocate or expand, and everybody in the country wants them to come to their town," he said.

All resumes received have been compared using a scoring system assigning points for things like education, experience and whether the applicant is a certified economic developer.

"We're looking for the appropriate experience and skill sets. We're trying to find somebody that is not only capable of doing the things [on the job description] but has actually done them," Essner said.

Ideal candidates will have been involved in strategic planning, actively marketing the area they work in to new businesses, involved in seeking prospects, and have a track record of collaborating with regional and state agencies. Essner said the committee is also looking for someone who has regular communication with the organization's board of directors and stakeholders -- in this case those are the city of Cape Girardeau, the Cape Girardeau Area Chamber of Commerce, Cape Girardeau County, the city of Jackson and Scott City.

The next set step is to schedule phone interviews and call references, which Essner said should be tentatively completed by the end of May.

The group hopes to conclude its in-person interviews by the end of June, he said.

Other members of the Magnet search committee are lawyer, Cape Girardeau city councilman and Magnet board member Mark Lanzotti, Jackson alderman and Magnet board member David Hitt, Cape Girardeau County Commissioner Paul Koeper and former Cape Girardeau mayor Jay Knudtson.

mmiller@semissourian.com

388-3646

Pertinent address:

1267 N. Mount Auburn Road, Cape Girardeau, MO

Map of pertinent addresses

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