Local Economic Development Professional is One of the First Graduates of TVA’s Professional Rural Leadership Institute

Daryl Phillips, Executive Director of Hickman County Economic & Community Development Association, Inc. in Centerville, Tennessee recently graduated from TVA’s Rural Leadership Institute. The Rural Leadership Institute, developed and sponsored by TVA Economic Development, provides professional leadership training to rural community economic development professionals in the TVA service area.

The institute is designed to help local participants more effectively lead volunteers, partner organizations, businesses, elected officials and citizens to ensure long-term success.

Four two-day sessions were conducted by leading area experts. The training included focused skills development in the following major areas:

  • Foundations of Leadership
  • Organizational and Individual Effectiveness
  • Effectively Telling the Story of Your Community
  • Outclassing the Competition

“Rural America’s ability to compete, gain jobs, and attract economic investments depends on local leaders being prepared, having product available, and using effective leadership and communication skills to differentiate their community’s unique strengths,” said TVA Senior Vice President of Economic Development John Bradley.

Rachel Crickmar, TVA Senior Program Manager of Rural Strategy, added: “It it has been exciting to work with these inaugural program participants. By enhancing their professional leadership skills, this program helps benefit their communities’ growth for years to come.”

A total of 18 participants completed the course and received graduation certificates. Some of the responses from these leadership graduates include:

“The TVA Rural Leadership Institute provided an awesome learning experience from personality traits and leadership styles to making effective presentations and everything in between,” said John Kilgore, Director of Economic Development for Scott County, Virginia.  “The positive relationships developed with economic development practitioners from rural communities and the TVA Staff is definitely worth the time invested.”

Daryl Phillips, CEcD, Hickman County Economic & Community Development Association immediately put some of the new skills learned at the TVA Rural Leadership Institute to work.  Phillips reported: “I was one of the presenters in the IGNITE International Economic Development Council (IEDC) Leadership Summit conference in San Antonio recently.  (IGNITE is multiple speakers, each speaking on their topic for exactly five minutes with 20 slides advancing every 15 seconds.)  I received positive feedback from my presentation and made some great connections as a result.”

Based on the success and responses from this inaugural class, TVA Economic Development is planning future institutes.  Rural community economic development professionals located in the TVA region will receive an application if interested in applying for future leadership classes.

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) a corporation owned by the U.S. government provides electricity for business customers and distribution utilities that serve 9 million people in seven southeastern states.  Economic development is a major part of TVA’s core mission.  TVA’s Economic Development services are focused on attracting targeted new industries, retaining and growing existing businesses and helping communities be better prepared for economic growth.  More information is available at TVAed.com.

-TVA Press Release

About Daryl Phillips, CEcD

I am a professional economic developer. I presently work for communities and companies in developing and implementing workforce and economic development solutions as CEO of Phillips Economic Development Solutions (Phi EDS). Prior to September 2017, I was the economic development professional who served a community team of elected officials, business people, community leaders and dedicated stakeholders for economic development in Cheatham County, Tennessee (pop. 39,880) and its four towns. During my five-year tenure, I served the team as Cheatham County grew over 1,700 jobs, turned around population declines at the start of this decade into healthy population growth, increased tourism expenditures 20.3% and local tax revenue from tourism 25.4%, grew sales tax revenue 36%, focused on developing the local workforce and was recognized by SmartAsset as having the 9th highest Incoming Investment Index of all the 95 counties in Tennessee. I am a member of International Economic Development Council, Southern Economic Development Council, Tennessee Economic Development Council and International Council of Shopping Centers. I have earned the designation of Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) from International Economic Development Council (IEDC), the Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP) certification from National Development Council and hold a Master of Business Administration from Tennessee Technological University.
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