Rochester’s top economic development organization has an interim leader with a familiar name.
The Rochester Area Economic Development Board of Directors named John Wade to serve as interim president of the non-profit organization. Wade will step into the role left open with the resignation of Ryan Nolander, who ended his two-year stint in the job on Sept. 30.
Wade has led many local organizations, such as the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce and Journey To Growth. Most recently he was chairman of the RAEDI board.
“John has more than 25 years of experience in senior management and economic development work and brings a deep understanding of the community that will be vital to the successful interim operation of RAEDI,” said RAEDI vice chairman John Beatty.
A search committee of seven community leaders, including Mayor Kim Norton, Byron City Administrator Mary Blair-Hoeft, Kelly Krajnik of Mayo Clinic Ventures, Olmsted County Commissioner Ken Brown, Norm Doty of Express Professionals, Dan Beck of Think Bank, and Adam Benike of Benike Construction, recommended Wade.
“Our economic future remains bright, but not without significant challenges," Wade said in the announcement. "RAEDI remains committed to developing private and public partnerships and investments to ensure that we are able to develop, grow and diversify our economy for all.
Beatty said Wade is experienced in developing innovative programs and has initiated and fostered robust partnerships and strategic alliances with government, allied agencies and key stakeholders in delivering effective programs and services to investors.
Wade served as president of the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce from 2003 to 2013. He was a co-owner and manager of Clements Chevrolet Cadillac before selling the business earlier this year.
“John has a track record of strong leadership and communication skills, and experience implementing major projects with community partners, including fundraising, all of which were noted in the position announcement as preferential and desirable for the ideal candidate,” Beatty said.