Economic Development Council of Colorado announces 2018 EDIE Award recipients

October 29, 2018

The Economic Development Council of Colorado (EDCC) announced the 2018 EDIE award recipients, recognizing economic development excellence during its annual Drive|Lead|Succeed Conference at The Ridgeline Hotel. “Many aspects of Colorado’s economic success can be attributed to the hard work, dedication, and contributions of communities, institutions and individuals that our awardees represent,” said Jeremy Riemann, EDCC Board Chair.
Small Community of the Year – City of Wheat Ridge, Colorado
The award for ‘Small Community of the Year’ was presented to the City of Wheat Ridge, Colorado – a city that has been extremely active in economic development over the past 36 months with much activity culminating in 2018. The City has nearly 100,000 sq. ft. of new retail space, 400 residential apartments, and 9,000 sq. ft. of maker space all under construction or planned for the community and supported by funding through the Urban Renewal Authority. Another 85+ acre development on the City’s west side, Clear Creek Crossing, will break ground this month bringing to fruition more than 3 years of work on this important economic development project for Wheat Ridge. 

Large Community of the Year – Town of Castle Rock, Colorado
The award for ‘Large Community of the Year’ was presented to the Town of Castle Rock for demonstrating a strong commitment to economic development through vision and execution. The community fostered two $60 Million mixed use projects in Downtown Castle Rock as well as partnered on the Promenade at Castle Rock project adding 1 million sq. ft. of retail and $300 Million investment, which has become one of the top 5 retail projects in the U.S. Adding to its list of accomplishments, the Town of Castle Rock invested $3 Million of economic development funds into a partnership with Colorado State University, Arapahoe Community College, and the Douglas County School District to create the 100,000 sq. ft. Castle Rock Collaboration Campus, which will house an office for Innosphere in partnership with the Denver South Economic Development Partnership.

Partnership Award – Castle Rock Collaboration Campus
The Partnership Award was presented to the Castle Rock Collaboration Campus. A partnership between the Town of Castle Rock, Arapahoe Community College, Colorado State University, and Douglas County School District created the $45 million, 100,000 sq. ft. educational campus. The Campus will open in fall of 2019 and will be capable of enrollment up to 1,500 students. The Campus will deliver 21st Century education in a completely seamless process to the students by offering concurrent enrollment options that can deliver a 4-year path from Douglas County High School through Arapahoe Community College and Colorado State University at 1/3 of the cost.
Additionally, the partnership includes Innosphere, Arapahoe Douglas Workforce Development and the 3D Printing Lab. This partnership is a shining example of how collaborative economic development can work to build educational and workforce infrastructure for a community.
Company of the Year – Comcast, Denver, Colorado
The award for ‘Company of the Year’ was presented to Comcast. Since 2011 Comcast has invested $2.3 billion in Colorado’s technology and infrastructure to offer multi-gig speeds to keep our communities competitive and our businesses running beyond fast. The company has shown its commitment to our communities and contributed more than $14 million in financial and in-kind resources to community organizations just this past year.
In 2018, Comcast approved more than $20 million to further expand Comcast’s infrastructure in Colorado with plans to serve an additional 4,064 businesses. The company approved over $2 million in infrastructure commitments in Douglas County alone for 2018 that will impact 466 businesses. The company’s partnership with Castle Rock has been critical to building out the needed infrastructure to support business growth in that community.
Comcast is committed to Colorado communities and partners with 14 economic development organizations statewide. Their partnership and commitment to the Colorado communities they support made them a clear winner for Company of the Year.

Rookie of the Year – Shannon Hein, City of Fort Collins
The Rookie of the Year Award was presented to Shannon Hein of the City of Fort Collins. Though only in the position for a short time, Hein has been able to move the needle in the community of Fort Collins. She has helped lead change in the organization and the community’s overall economic health strategy. Hein was recognized for her work on a construction toolkit, creating coffee chats with the Mayor and City Manager for businesses to build relationships, and her efforts to visit over 100 businesses to build strong collaboration and partnerships.
Economic Development Achievement Award - Frank Gray, Castle Rock Economic Development Council
The Economic Development Achievement Award was presented to Frank Gray, President & CEO of the Castle Rock Economic Development Council. Gray has been in economic development for 15 years, working in Castle Rock for the past 10 years. Gray has served as the board chair for the EDCC, Arapahoe Community College, Colorado Lending Source, and is a founding member of Colorado Companies to Watch. He has been instrumental in projects such as the Castle Rock Collaboration Campus, the Riverwalk redevelopment project in Downtown Castle Rock, and the 65-acre mixed use development project, Miller’s Landing.
Chairman’s Choice Award – Governor John Hickenlooper
The Chairman’s Choice Award was presented to Governor John Hickenlooper. Over the past eight years, Governor Hickenlooper has demonstrated a persistent commitment to making Colorado a great place for business. Governor Hickenlooper actively participated in championing the Colorado Blueprint, has supported rural broadband and the Rural Economic Development Initiative, all to make Colorado economically resilient. The Governor has advanced renewable energy initiatives, while also protecting the oil & gas industry against initiatives that go beyond regulation of the industry. Governor Hickenlooper’s leadership through fires and floods throughout Colorado, has been essential to our state’s economic health and infrastructure resiliency. As a champion for economic development and economic resiliency, Governor Hickenlooper has led efforts to not only grow the Colorado economy, but strengthen all communities throughout Colorado.

"Colorado is a shining example for other states of what can happen when we come together and execute on a vision. It’s an honor to have been chosen to receive the Chairman’s Award and represent what's best about Colorado,“  said Governor John Hickenlooper.  

Special thanks to our Reception Sponsor: BNSF Railway