About the Editor
Ron is the Editor for the Journal of Applied Economic Development and an Senior Research Fellow for the Center of Regional Economic Competitiveness. He is the author of the recently published History of American State and Local Economic Development: As Two Ships Pass in the Night (Edward Elgar, 2017). The book is the first comprehensive history of American state and local ED, taking us back to the colonial days through 1990 (or so). A second volume through the Great Recession is well on the way. So’s a Third offering case studies of states and cities. ONLINE is “Introduction to American State and Local Economic Development“. Ron is a C2ER Senior Fellow (since 2009) and Editor of the Journal of Applied Research in Economic Development (since 2012).
Ron holds a PhD from Miami University of Ohio in Political Science and Public Administration. He has served on the faculty of Truman College and was a tenured faculty at Canisius College; in both instances he was Program Chair for Urban Studies/Public Administration. In 1987 Ron followed his heart (and wallet) and embraced a second career in economic development, becoming the Economic Development Coordinator for the newly-elected Erie (NY) County Executive, Dennis Gorski, followed by an eleven year stint as President/CEO of the Erie County Industrial Development Agency and a four year term as President/CEO of the Dutchess County (NY) Economic Development Corporation. He served for eleven years on the CUED/IEDC Board of Directors and is former Chair of the New York State Economic Development Council and long-term board member. He was formerly a CECD, but no more. Since his retirement from active economic development in 2005, taught full time and adjunct of the graduate faculty at Marist College (New York City) and taught a graduate economic development course at Johns Hopkins (2012). Also Ron has served as adjunct history at both Dutchess and Anne Arundel Community Colleges from 2006 through 2015.
As an economic development professional Ron was an Assistant City Manage in Kirksville Missouri, a neighborhood and housing activist during the early 1980s, a member of a team which elected the first ever Democratic County Executive in Erie County, New York, an Economic Development Coordinator and First Deputy Commissioner for the Erie County Department of Environment & Planning, CEO of the Erie County Industrial Development Agency Group (six separate corporations), County Executive’s JTPA/WIA Coordinator, Vice Chair and Acting Chair of the 1993 World University Games, decade long member of Erie County MEP Board of Directors, and finished his career (quite literally) as CEO of the Dutchess County Economic Development Corporation (which also included an Tourist Promotion Agency, an Economic Development Zone, and Industry Councils (including a Semi-conductor Tech Council led by IBM). During this time Ron served on the Board and a Chair of the New York State Economic Development Council, taught for one year its introductory course in economic development, and served for a decade on the Boards of the Council of Urban Economic Development/International Economic Development Council. Ron has successfully achieved CEcD certification (now expired) and served for five years on CUED/IEDC’s Certification Committee; he has participated in numerous special CUED/IEDC community task forces, the latest in 2008 being New Orleans. Ron has also offered several certification workshops with the American Planning Association.
Professionally, Ron has extensive experience in Industrial Revenue Bonds (issuance in excess of $5 billion), PILOT agreements, RLF loans (over 1100 loans), a micro loan fund, established a venture capital investment corporation (whose track record today includes two publicly-traded corporations), managed nearly 2 million square foot of real estate, eminent domain, brownfields projects, professional hockey, Triple A Baseball and University of Buffalo football stadium construction management/and ownership (Hockey & Baseball),foreign trade zone, creation of a 500 acre industrial park, associated with the Export Import Bank (from which several hundred million dollars of export insurance and loans were achieved), founder of an 100,000 sq ft Advanced Training Center, operator of two short line railroads, a proud manager of sewer lines, an incubator, and several trade missions (including a reverse trade mission). Internationally Ron has been the recipient of a MITI grant for economic development study/travel in Japan, member of a four member World Bank/Inter American Development Bank team to Colombia (leading to establishing the first secondary market in that nation) and as Vice Chair and Acting Chair of the 1993 World University Games (127 nations over 7000 athletes/coaches) Ron accumulated a great deal of foreign travel/experience over a seven year period.
Ron is currently partly retired, and apparently somewhat restless, still working on the definitive book on local economic development (with C2ER support and involvement), and, of course, serves as writer and editor for the Journal.