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Veteran economic developer from Ohio joins Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce staff

Posted on: 01/31/2018   |   Category: Press Releases

FORT WORTH - Veteran economic development executive Chris Strayer of the Columbus, Ohio, region will join the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce staff February 12 as senior vice president of Business Attraction, Retention and Expansion, leading one of four pillars of the Chamber’s new strategic plan, Fortify.

“Chris comes to us from Columbus 2020, one of the top five economic development agencies in the country,” said Brandom Gengelbach, executive vice president of Economic Development, Fort Worth Chamber. “We have said that we need rock stars on our team and Chris is just that. His forward thinking and willingness to try new initiatives are perfect for what we need to help accomplish our new strategy.”

Strayer is presently senior project manager for Business Development and Project Management at Columbus 2020, the economic development organization for the 11-county Columbus region.

Since 2011, he has overseen more than 180 successful projects with more than $1.5 billion in investments and 35,000 retained and created jobs. Clients have included Verizon, Kroger, Abbott Laboratories and Avnet, as well as several other Fortune 500 companies.

In addition, Strayer leads the SiteOhio site authentication process for the Columbus Region. This process includes real estate identification, site due diligence documents, utility location and capacity concerns and site visit protocol.

With a background in land use planning, civil & environmental engineering, construction, land development and government at the local and state level, Strayer understands the process that companies must embark upon for the expansion of their organizational footprint. 

Previously, Strayer was special projects manager for the Ohio Department of Development and development director for the City of Canal Winchester. He holds a B.S. in Urban and Regional Planning from Michigan State University and an Economic Development Finance Professional credential from the National Development Council.

“Looking across the country, it is hard to find a community comparable to Fort Worth’s ability to attract and retain top talent and economic opportunity,” said Strayer. “This is a vibrant city that my family and I are excited to call home. I look forward to working with community partners to support the continued economic growth of the Fort Worth area.”

The Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce, with 2,000 member businesses, is one of the largest chambers in North Texas. Through its core functions of business attraction and retention, talent development, small business and entrepreneur support, and government advocacy, the Chamber’s mission is to bring the Fort Worth region together to identify issues, solve problems and help align resources resulting in a stronger business climate and greater economic prosperity for all.

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