Economic Development Organizations Receive Awards for Business Retention and Expansion Efforts

Friday, May 04, 2018

award winnersFrom l-r The Honorable Adam Gregg, Lt. Governor, State of Iowa, Area 15 RPC Executive Director Chris Bowers, City of Ottumwa Mayor Tom Lazio, The Honorable Kim Reynolds, Governor, State of Iowa, Joe Rasso CEO, Blane/Canada, and Sharon Stroh, Executive Director of OEDC.

AWARDDes Moines, IA – May 3, 2018: The Professional Developers of Iowa (PDI) honored economic development organizations from Ames, Ottumwa, Iowa Lakes Corridor, and West Central Iowa during the SMART Economic Development Conference held in Des Moines on May 2.

The PDI Business Retention and Expansion (BRE) Awards Program recognizes the outstanding efforts of local and regional economic development initiatives in supporting growth and expansion of existing Iowa companies. Receiving an award for Single Project Success - Regional/Larger Community - Ottumwa Economic Development Corporation for the C&C Manufacturing expansion.

The Ottumwa Economic Development Corporation became aware of the financial difficulties at the former Al Jon facility in Ottumwa in September 2016, and that bankruptcy was eminent if a buyer wasn’t found quickly. Al Jon was the manufacturer of runway snow removal vehicles; each piece of equipment costing up to $950,000. The estimated cost of the land, buildings and manufacturing rights was at least $3.5 million.

With its partners Area 15 Regional Planning Commission, Ottumwa Regional Legacy Foundation, and the City of Ottumwa, the community was able to generate $550,000 in financial support/incentives in less than 3 months, not including State of Iowa High Quality Jobs assistance for which the business was ineligible.

Due to these active and willing participants in preserving a now 56 year-old business with an economic impact of over $20 million in a community of 25,000 people, C&C has been able to multiply the impact this deal has made on the community, including the purchase of the former Al Jon Solid Waste Products Division which was also in foreclosure. This acquisition has led to additional jobs in the region, of which there are now 115 jobs between Ottumwa and Centerville. The company has settled nicely in the Ottumwa airport area, and is looking forward to continued growth.

“Ottumwa Economic Development Corp. is so very proud of this award; recognition by one’s peers is a high honor. And, our mission is directly acknowledged for our work in business expansion” says Sharon Stroh, OEDC Executive Director.

“Supporting Iowa’s existing industry is a key priority for PDI’s membership,” stated Carla Eysink, PDI President. “The BRE Awards are intended to increase the focus on fostering Iowa business growth by economic development organizations and spotlight BRE programs and projects that have made a significant impact on Iowa communities.”

Contact: Lynn Harkin, Executive Director
Professional Developers of Iowa (PDI)
1255 SW Prairie Trail Parkway
Ankeny, IA 50023-7068
Phone 515-243-4585/ Cell 515-250-1489

Founded in 1973, with current membership of over 320, PDI is an organization dedicated to advancing the professionalism of its members through a wide range of programs and services. As an association, PDI provides professional training that helps its members do a better job for their community. PDI creates an atmosphere of support and offers an instant network of seasoned experts for local professionals to seek advice and support.

Learn more about PDI at, and .

Category: Awards and Recognition

You May Also Be Interested In:

Ottumwa Economic Development Corporation 217 East Main Street Ottumwa, Iowa  52501
Phone 641-682-3465 Fax 641-682-3466