NEW CUMBERLAND - A new executive director of the Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle (BDC) was introduced at Thursday's Hancock County Commission meeting.
Patrick Ford, who hails from Hardy County in West Virginia's eastern panhandle, stated that he is looking forward to his new position as executive director.
"I welcome the opportunity to work with an organization that possesses the expertise, desire, and commitment to improve the quality of life as well as expand the tax base and employment opportunities in West Virginia's northern panhandle," Ford said.
Thursday was Ford's official first day as director.
Ford has over 20 years of experience working in community and economic development.
Ford most recently worked as executive director of the Urban Redevelopment Authority for Pittsburgh. He has also worked as a development executive in communities throughout West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, and Florida.
Ford holds a Bachelors and Masters degree in Urban Planning from the University of Virginia.
BDC Chairman William D'Alesio stated that the BDC Board feels "fortunate to have been able to attract someone with the education, background, and record of success" that Ford has demonstrated.
Ford stated that he is excited to apply his experience working for both the private sector and the government as the BDC's executive director.
"It's been a long, long journey to get to this point," Commissioner Dan Greathouse said. "Let's get busy and get some things done."
Ford stated that over the next six month, as the county works through its strategic planning exercises, he will be calling on the commissioners to participate and getting to know their needs.
"We can do a lot of good things in the years to come," Ford said.
The BDC is a non-profit organization formed to serve as the lead economic development agency for Hancock and Brooke counties.