What is the secret to prosperity in a community? “It’s all about leadership, unity, and commitment,” said Brad Day, Long County’s new development authority executive director. He spoke to the Hinesville Rotary Club on April 21. Day has observed dynamic leadership over his 25 years of economic development experience. He highlighted the energetic and savvy leadership of Robert Parker, Chairman of the Long County Board of Commissioners. Day said “Chairman Parker and the County Commissioners have been welcoming in attitude and financially supportive” since he started in Long County. The Development Authority of Long County showed unity recently by placing Long County School Superintendent Dave Edwards and Ludowici Mayor James Fuller Jr., on the authority as official members.
Day also spoke about Ron Tolley’s, ability to work cooperatively. Mr. Tolley is the lead professional for the Liberty County Development Authority. “Ron reached out to me immediately when he had a prospect that couldn’t find a place in Liberty County. He offered Long County an opportunity to land them. All the leaders from the region have been equally gracious as I have started this new role," he said. Day follows Mr. Chuck Scragg who had served for two years as acting county administrator as well as development authority executive for Long County. Mr. Scragg had retired from Georgia Power Company and has been serving Long County in an interim role. Mr. Scragg was instrumental in unifying the Long County Development Authority and re-structuring the Long County administration and retro-fitting a new administration building.
Commitment in economic development means patience, proper funding, and innovation. Meaningful activities in the economic development process take time. The construction of water or sewer systems takes time. Building speculative buildings takes concerted professional expertise. Like anything else, economic development efforts require resources that always seem to be scarce. Day asserted that “Creativity wins economic development deals. Discovering deal structures that work best for the prospect and community is the exciting element of local economic development.