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They're teaming up for development

November 28, 1998|By KERRY LYNN FRALEY

As Washington County native and father of two young children, Timothy R. Troxell feels a personal stake in the success of the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission.

That's why Troxell, 32, a Hagerstown resident who grew up in Funkstown, threw his hat in the ring to be second in command of the newly reorganized county office.

"I guess it was kind of a community desire to have someone competent in," he said.

Troxell said he wanted to see good companies drawn and cultivated so that his and others' children could and would stay in the county.

Troxell, who became assistant director of the EDC in mid-October, is one of the new EDC team put together by EDC Executive Director John C. Howard in recent months.

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Others hired for slots in the revamped organizational model are Thomas B. Riford, marketing specialist; Corey E. Stottlemyer, administrator; and Linda A. Spence, administrative assistant.

EDC officials announced plans for a major reorganization in late April, after longtime coordinators Sharon W. Disque and Beverly A. Baccala left the office within months of each other to take economic development-related jobs outside the county.

Under the old model, the two coordinators worked in tandem, with Baccala focusing on retention and expansion of existing companies while Disque focused on attracting new businesses.

When the reorganization was announced, Howard said it would make the EDC a more flexible and efficient customer service agency.

Now that it has been completed, the office can go full steam with the EDC's strategic priorities plan, he said.

Howard, who started in September 1997, said he knew that given the county's requirement for writing job descriptions, advertising the positions and interviewing, it would take a while to make the reorganization plans a reality.

"I'm just thrilled that we now have such a great team in place," Howard said.

The synergy among himself and his capable, experienced staffers makes the office seem larger in terms of professionalism and depth, he said.

The EDC's budget was increased about $70,000 for fiscal year 1999 to provide funds for the new staff size and additional marketing, Howard said.

The $331,249 budget includes salaries, operating expenses, office equipment, marketing and training, he said.

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