Rural Development SIG
The following organizations provide grant and loan programs to support economic development opportunities in rural Georgia or focused educational and leadership opportunities for rural economic developers.
The School of Business offers a program of study in Rural Studies – both in business and economic development. Learn how you can provide an internship opportunity for one of these students or partner on a research project.
The Archway Partnership is a University of Georgia outreach platform evolving to a University System of Georgia platform facilitated by University of Georgia to deliver a full range of higher education resources to address economic and community development. To find out if you are an Archway community, visit www.archwaypartnership.uga.edu.
Drawing upon the knowledge and resources of the University of Georgia, the Institute provides education, assistance, research, policy analysis, and publications to assist public officials in serving citizens in Georgia and throughout the world. Of particular interest to economic developers may be research assistance and training and development as well as publications.
Georgia Grown is a marketing and economic development program of the Georgia Department of Agriculture aimed at helping agribusinesses grow.
Georgia’s communities are served by twelve regional commissions that offer services from regional planning, grant writing, to economic development, and more. To find out which regional commission serves your community, check out
Georgia Southern University has become an increasingly large presence in the realm of rural development. From the Bureau of Business Research and Economic Development to the Rural Health Research Institute, the Herty Advanced Materials Development Center, the STEM Institute and more, GSU has resources that may be a great fit for your community and your business partners. For more information, contact Charles E. Patterson, VP for Research & Economic Development at (912) 478-2647, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
EII is Georgia Tech’s primary business outreach organization and works with startup companies, industry, the public sector, and more. To find out what services are available in your region, visit:
The National Rural Economic Developers Association is a member organization dedicated to the advancement of rural economic development through providing education and networking opportunities.
OneGeorgia’s programs, such as land acquisition, infrastructure development, airport enhancement and broadband creation, business relocation assistance, entrepreneur support, and more are focused on the economic vitality of rural Georgia. The Authority provides both grants and loans for qualified applicants. www.onegeorgia.org
The Georgia Department of Economic Development and the Georgia Department of Community Affairs have individuals helping to address the needs of your community and region. To find out who serves your community go to:
Tourism Team: http://www.georgia.org/about/Pages/contact-georgia-tourism-division.aspx#reps
Department of Community Affairs: https://dca.ga.gov/
USDA’s financial programs support such essential public facilities and services as water and sewer systems, housing, health clinics, emergency service facilities, and electric telephone service.
NEED PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT?
Both GEDA and IEDC offer scholarships for partners serving in less economically advantaged communities.
LINK IN TO KEEP INFORMED
Check out GEDA, NREDA, and other groups on Linkedin to find a free forum to chat with other economic developers with common experiences.
Communities across the state, rural and otherwise, rely on small businesses and enterpreneurs as an economic engine. The state’s Small Business Development Centers, microlenders, and other organizations are available resources that you can provide to the small businesses in your community. Check out GEDA’s Entrepreneur & Small Business Development SIG for a list of small business resources and more.
DON’T FORGET YOUR UTILITY PARTNERS & TECHNICAL COLLEGES
Training, research, lead development, technical services, and much more are available for economic development partners. Electric Cities of Georgia, Georgia Electric Membership Corporation, and Georgia Power all have great economic development and technical services teams to assist you. Contact the VP of Economic Development at the technical college that serves your region to make sure you are linking together to serve your community in an effective way.
If you’re not already a member, join GEDA as a great networking organization and gives you access to resources, partners, and information that will help bring jobs and investment to your community.
For more information, contact SIG Chair, Saralyn Stafford.