Board Member Named CEO
The Huntsman School of Business congratulates Theresa Foxley on her recent appointment as President and CEO of Economic Development Corporation of Utah (EDCUtah), a private nonprofit organization working to attract and grow business in Utah.
Ms. Foxley, a USU graduate and Huntsman School of Business National Advisory Board member, most recently served as Deputy Director of Corporate Recruitment and Business Services at the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) where she oversaw business development, expansion and relocation projects. Prior to GOED, Ms. Foxley worked as a business and finance attorney at Ballard Spahr. Ms. Foxley is driven by her deep interest in promoting Utah and the success of this great state. She’s excited about the opportunity to focus on business recruitment in her new role at EDCUtah.
Since its founding in 1987, EDCUtah has grown into an organization with more than 260 members working to bring together community and private sector leaders as well as state and local elected government officials to develop programs that make Utah attractive to new companies and companies looking to expand. Utah is uniquely situated with a pipeline of well-trained, young individuals ready to enter the workforce, infrastructure assets and a transportation network that includes rail, air, and road for ease of manufacturing and distribution, and world class educational and research institutions in the state that train and develop new talent, create new business opportunities, and generate intellectual property. From a governance standpoint, Utah is a predictable and attractive environment for businesses. The quality of life in Utah is also a compelling feature for businesses who understand that talented workers in a healthy economy have a strong negotiating position. The ability to have a great life outside of the office as well as a rewarding career makes it easier for businesses to attract and retain talent.
The state economy is seeing some success from the efforts at EDCUtah. Recently, Utah has seen an increase in high-tech manufacturing, information technology, financial services, and fintech companies. “We’re in a marketing role of one of the best products in the country, and also one of the best products globally,” says Ms. Foxley. “Governor Herbert’s vision of Utah being the top economy in the country has permeated into all levels of government and has people thinking about economic development because it funds everything else we enjoy as residents of this state.”
EDCUtah is a trusted partner to the state, to local communities, and the private sector and is helping communities and the state identify and take advantage of opportunities for economic growth in the future. They are also working in connection with Governor Herbert’s Talent Ready Utah Initiative, which is a partnership between the education system and private sector to identify and develop curriculum for students. The goal over the next 4 years is to have 40,000 highly skilled workers entering the workforce, and to create 25,000 jobs in rural Utah by helping companies already in place expand and access new markets incrementally.
To students entering the workforce, Ms. Foxley stresses the importance of understanding the intersection between technology and the workforce. “Be comfortable with change. Be open to expanding your skill set. Add value anywhere you go as a student, whether as an intern or in your first job. Really understand what drives the organization and how you can add value to their mission. Most importantly, find something you like doing.”
Ms. Foxley’s advice to those looking to start a business in Utah is to become aware of the many governmental and non-governmental resources available to help small business owners succeed. These resources can be found online at http://edcutah.org/ and http://business.utah.gov/. For Huntsman alumni outside the state but considering an expansion into Utah, Ms. Foxley says there’s nothing quite like living and working here. “You can get your arms around Utah. It’s warm, engaging, and accessible. You can understand how to solve problems here because it’s a navigable community. If you’re considering an expansion into Utah, call me. I’d love to talk.”