The Iowa City Area Development (ICAD) Group received two “Gold Excellence in Economic Development Awards” for regional initiatives. ICAD Group was recognized for their Datacenter Flip Book and the Pick Your Pace Website by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). Both entries received the highest recognition, Gold Excellence, among all communities with populations of 25,000 - 200,000 who submitted entries.
The honors were presented at an awards ceremony October 2, during the IEDC Annual Conference, in Houston, Texas.
"We recognize ICAD Group for creating innovative and successful strategies to promote economic development in this period of global recovery,” said Jay Moon, IEDC chair. “Our awards honor organizations and individuals for their efforts in creating positive change in communities. ICAD Group demonstrates that they are at the forefront of the economic development profession and are using cutting-edge, effective practices that can be replicated in other communities.
Both pieces were created to represent Iowa’s Creative Corridor. For the Datacenter booklet, ICAD Group worked with the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance (CRMEA) and Benson and Hepker Design in Iowa City to create a promotional piece that clearly illustrated the region’s geographic location and its benefits for data centers.
The piece was created last year and used during the national data center world conference in 2011 and 2012. Mark Nolte, ICAD Group’s interim president, said the flipbook was well received just this week. “The research that went into this piece proved itself this week at AFCOM,” said Nolte. “It impressively answered all the questions about our area and demonstrated we knew this sector.”
The Pick Your Pace website has been a “work-in-progress” for the past two years and was recently upgraded with help from Henry Russell Bruce. The website helps interstate commerce companies with workforce retention and attraction in Iowa’s Creative Corridor.
According to DaLayne Williamson, ICAD Group’s Workforce Business Services Director, Iowa and the Creative Corridor are not always high on job seekers' radar. “Once they have more information, they are often impressed by how much more there is here,” said Williamson. “This website gives our investors and clients a tool to help them compete for talent and communicate what our seven counties have to offer.”
IEDC's Excellence in Economic Development Awards recognize the world’s best economic development programs and partnerships, marketing materials, and the year’s most influential leaders. These awards honor organizations and individuals for their efforts in creating positive change in urban, suburban, and rural communities.