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EDIE Awards

EDCC’s Annual EDIE Award recognizes outstanding economic development achievements by our members, organization volunteers, communities, companies and legislators.

EDIE Awards Criteria

Please review EDIE Awards Criteria prior to submitting your nomination.

Nominate Today!

Do you know someone who should be recognized for excellence in your community and economic development.

Deadline for nominations is
November 2, 2020

Past Winner’s Circle

Meet our past winner’s going back to the inception of the EDIE Awards.

– 2020 Annual Meeting & Awards Ceremony –

Master of Ceremonies:
Preston Gibson, former Area Manager, Xcel Energy

November 18, 2020
10 – 11:30 a.m.

Every year at EDCC’s Annual Drive|Lead|Succeed Conference, EDCC recognizes the outstanding economic development achievements by our members, organization volunteers, communities, companies, and legislators. This year is no different – accept its virtual!

Annual Meeting and EDIE Award Ceremony Event Timeline

  • EDIE Award Nominations Deadline: Nov. 2
  • EDCC’s Award Selection Committee Nominee Deadline: Nov. 6
  • EDCC’s Board of Directors Nominations for 2021 Board of Directors: Nov. 6
  • EDCC’s Annual Meeting & Awards Ceremony: Nov. 18, 10 – 11:30 p.m.
    • Newly appointment board members and EDIE Award Winners will be announced

Thanks goes to our 2020 EDIE Awards Title Sponsor! 

Congratulate the 2019 Winners

Click a category below to learn more about this year’s winners.

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Large Community of the Year

City of Westminster

The award for ‘Large Community of the Year’ was presented to the City of Westminster for demonstrating a strong commitment to economic development through vision and execution. To become the next urban center of the Colorado Front Range, the City of Westminster took a holistic approach to its planning efforts by focusing on People, Place, and Business. By doing so, Westminster is fostering the development of its city center – Downtown Westminster. It will be a civic, cultural and economic hub for the community. More than 1 million square feet are currently under construction and more than $300 million has been invested to date.

Only 15 minutes by train to Denver Union Station, the neighborhood of Westminster Station continues to focus its redevelopment around transit, modern living, a 38-acre park, and a burgeoning music district. Historic Westminster revitalization efforts have begun, with a focus on community input and redevelopment plans, including planning efforts for the redevelopment of the Harris Park area.

Additionally, with the help of a task force of industry professionals, housing advocates, and elected leaders, the City has developed a strategic housing plan for Westminster. The plan takes a balanced approach by removing barriers to the development of new units—as well as preserving existing units—throughout the city.

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Company of the Year

Colorado Springs Utilities

The award for ‘Company of the Year’ was presented to Colorado Springs Utilities. Colorado Springs Utilities is a critical partner in the economic development efforts in Colorado Springs. They have supported major projects in Colorado Springs over the past two years by providing solutions to infrastructure needs, offering competitive rates, expediting construction and planning, and negotiating economic development rates for key projects. In support of Colorado Springs’ work with Amazon, Sierra Nevada Corporation, 3G Data, SAP (twin data centers), Ent Credit Union’s headquarters, U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum and Hall of Fame, and T5@Colorado, Colorado Springs Utilities has provided direct investment for upfront infrastructure in excess of $9.1 million. Additionally, Colorado Springs Utilities has offered economic development rate options that allow some of these customers to grow into their full rate allocation over time and help them grow their business.

Colorado Springs Utilities has prioritized Urban Utility Infrastructure as a Strategic Initiative within their 2019-2023 Strategic Plan, taking a holistic, innovative approach to determine best solutions for utility infrastructure utilization in preparation for redevelopment and utility modernization. Utilities has forecasted population and utility load growth and is studying the infrastructure needs across electric, natural gas, water and wastewater to support the growth without negatively impacting current or future customers. The initiative approach establishes a progressive vision for utility infrastructure that aligns with the City’s plans for urban redevelopment. This program has already invested $3.725 million and projecting a $10.7 million investment for the initial phase of infrastructure improvements to increase speed to market for connecting customers and reducing costs.

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Volunteer of the Year

Paul Harter | Camp Creek Holdings

The award for ‘Volunteer of the Year’ was presented to the Paul Harter with Camp Creek Holdings. Paul Harter has been a dedicated business owner, leader and volunteer for Northern Colorado and beyond for the past two decades. In 2015 Paul took the lead to establish the Northern Colorado Manufacturing Sector Partnership for Region 2. He has been instrumental in the organization’s creation and success. He and his board colleagues have traveled across the US to help establish manufacturing partnerships in other states. Most recently in 2017 Paul was appointed by the governor to the Colorado Workforce Development Council board of directors.

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Legislator of the Year

Sen. Don Coram and Sen. Rachel Zenzinger

The legislator of the Year award was presented to two legislators, Sen. Don Coram and Sen. Rachel Zenzinger.

Senator Don Coram (R-6) is a bipartisan legislator from southwest Colorado who often bridges the political gap to advance economic opportunities for rural Coloradans. Specifically, Sen. Coram sponsored and passed HB19-1322 to transfer $30 million annually from the Unclaimed Property Trust Fund to the Housing Development Grant Fund to increase access to affordable housing options, helping businesses sustain a qualified workforce in rural communities. In the 2018 session, the Senator passed SB18-002 to reallocate funding from the Public Utility Commission’s High Cost Support Mechanism to support broadband deployment across Colorado. The Senator introduced, but did not pass, SB19-067 which would have dedicated funds to rural businesses.

Senator Rachel Zenzinger (D-19) is an active leader in housing and transportation funding policies aimed to strengthen Colorado communities. The Senator also holds key positions as chair of the Senate Appropriations committee and a member of the Joint Budget Committee. In the 2019 session, Sen. Zenzinger sponsored and passed HB19-1228 to expand Colorado’s affordable housing tax credit from $5 million to $10 million per year through December 2024. The bill will expand access to affordable and workforce housing options in communities across the state. The Senator was also a lead voice on SB19-262 and SB19-263 to begin addressing the state’s transportation funding needs. SB19-262 transfers $100 million from the General Fund to the Highway Users Tax Fund (HUTF) to be allocated 60% percent to the State Highway Fund for CDOT, 22% to counties, and 18% to municipalities. SB19-263 repeals the 2019 referendum required by SB18-001 and proposes a 2020 measure to issue TRANs bonds up to a maximum amount of $1.84 billion, repealing existing lease purchase obligations and requiring annual GF transfers to repay the debt. These bills will be critical to addressing statewide infrastructure needs.

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Legislator Lifetime Achievement

Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp and Sen. Jack Tate

EDCC awarded two Legislator Lifetime Awards to Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp and Sen. Jack Tate for their commitment to the economic vitality of Colorado.

Senator Tate is a bipartisan legislator committed to opposing new taxes and encouraging job growth across Colorado. Since joining the legislature, Sen. Tate has focused on issues such as Gallagher, transportation funding, and easing business regulations. Sen. Tate is committed to cutting wasteful government spending, reducing bureaucratic red tape, opposing new taxes, and encouraging job growth in Colorado. A few recent legislative highlights include HB19-1240 Sales Tax Administration, HB19-1228 Increase Tax Credit Allocation Affordable Housing, HB18-1083 On-demand Air Carriers Sales and Use Tax Exemption, and HB18-1135 Extend Advanced Industry Export Acceleration Program.

With over 30 years’ experience in the public and private sectors, Representative Kraft-Tharp focused her passion for economic development, workforce development, and tax policy into community service. Since joining the legislature, Rep. Kraft-Tharp has led the state’s efforts to simplify the sales and use tax reporting process for business owners and is Chair of the Sales and Use Tax Simplification Task Force. She has also championed efforts to support small business owners and ease their administrative burdens. A few recent legislative highlights include HB19-1240 Sales Tax Administration, HB18-1083 On-demand Air Carriers Sales and Use Tax Exemption, HB18-1135 Extend Advanced Industry Export Acceleration Program, HB18-1185 Market Sourcing for Business Income Tax Apportionment, and HB18-1250 Analysis to Improve Compliance with Rules by Businesses.

“The Economic Development Council of Colorado is proud to honor our legislators for this special recognition,” said Tammy Fields, Board Chair, Economic Development Council of Colorado.  “Colorado is privileged to have legislators that demonstrate collaboration and strong leadership by advocating for important public policy which supports industry and economic development initiatives that strengthen Colorado’s economy.”

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Rookie of the Year

Audrey Herbison | Upstate Colorado Economic Development

The Rookie of the Year Award was presented to Audrey Herbison with Upstate Colorado Economic Development. Audrey has quickly become an integral part of the economic development ecosystem in Weld County. Her insights based on tactical approaches has helped communities with their economic development plans across the region. Herbison was recognized for her leadership role in the development of the regional industry cluster analysis that is being used by NoCo REDI, a strategic plan to provide economic development support for all of Weld & Larimer Counties. She was also recognized for having met with over 14 Weld County communities, providing them with technical support, as well as assisting with 35 company retention visits and has worked with 53 prospects assisting them through various aspects of the site selection process.

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Economic Development Achievement

Sandy Head | Montrose Economic Development Corp.

The Economic Development Achievement Award was presented to Sandy Head the long-standing executive director for the Montrose Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). Her work to bring new, and expanding businesses, has contributed to the economic growth in Montrose, Colorado. Head has been instrumental in projects such as the replat at the Montrose Airport Industrial Park to provide the necessary land for the expanding Polystrand facility. MEDC’s support of Hansen Weatherport enabled the company to expand, increasing their employee base from eight to over 200 now employed by the company for their Western Slope operations. More recent examples include the retention of Montrose Forest Products and most notably, Ross Reels/Mayfly Outdoors. With the retention of Ross Reels, the Mayfly Outdoors investment in the creation of the Colorado Outdoor project is under way paving the way for substantial economic impact for Montrose.

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Barry Gore | former President & CEO | Adams County EDC

The Chairman’s Choice Award was presented to Barry Gore, former President & CEO of Adams County Economic Development Corp. Gore’s name is synonymous with Adams County influencing several high-profile projects including the ASARCO redevelopment, a high-purity metal refining facility – in order to make the project work they had to change the urban renewal law to include unincorporated areas; championing the designation of Colorado’s first Air and Spaceport facility; and the attraction/retention efforts with Maxar/DigitalGlobe Headquarters, a best in class satellite digital imagery, derived data and space infrastructure company. Gore is also a champion of regional collaboration and supported all the communities Adams County EDC served and for those with whom he worked.

From the Past…