NCEDA’s Board of Directors

NCEDA is governed by a volunteer board of directors consisting of passionate leaders from all sectors of economic development and allied professions. The board is devoted to serving the needs of our members, our sponsors and the people of North Carolina.

The  Board of Directors application period opens each April. The 2025 application period will open April 1, 2025. Contact Liz Dobbins-Smith with any questions.

NCEDA Pathway to Leadership Flyer

Officers 2023-24


Joanna Helms
Town of Apex
About Joanna Helms

Vice President

Gary Lanier
Columbus County Economic Development Commission
About Gary Lanier


Ryan Nance
NC Electric Cooperatives
About Ryan Nance

Immediate Past President

Chris Platé
Monroe-Union County Economic Development
About Chris Platé

Directors 2024

Kelly Andrews
Pitt County Economic Development
About Kelly Andrews
Brittany Brady
Henderson County Partnership for Economic Development
About Brittany Brady
Carl Rees
ElectriCities of North Carolina
About Carl Rees

Directors 2025

Clark Duncan
Economic Development Coalition for
Asheville-Buncombe County
About Clark Duncan
Andre Lennon
Civil & Environmental Consultants
About Andre Lennon
Todd Tucker
Sanford Area Growth Alliance
About Todd Tucker

Directors 2026

Timothy Downs
Thomas & Hutton
About Timothy Downs
Natalie Hawkins
Moore County Economic
Development Partnership
About Natalie Hawkins
Julie Pruett
Marlboro Development Team
About Julie Pruett


Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders
NC Department of Commerce
Christopher Chung
Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina
Scott Hamilton
Golden LEAF Foundation
Elizabeth Underwood
Lake Norman Economic Development
Dr. Patricia Mitchell CEcD
Appalachian State University


Liz Dobbins-Smith

Contact Liz Dobbins-Smith at 888.246.2332 if you have any questions or
would like to join a planning committee.