SARASOTA COUNTY, FL (August 5, 2021)  — The board of directors for The Sarasota County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) met today and voted to end its outside search for a new chief executive officer. Instead, it named Lisa Krouse as the organization’s CEO. Krouse has been serving in the position on an interim basis since early July. The leadership decision by the EDC board comes on the heels of Erin Silk moving into the role of Vice President of Business Development Services.

The board further voted to form a task force that will assess options for the EDC’s legal and structural framework going forward.

“Our board agreed unanimously that we have strong local talent in both Lisa and Erin Silk, and we are confident that they will guide us well while staying focused on the vital work of diversifying our economy,” said the EDC’s vice chair Joe C. Hembree. “With her significant leadership experience and deep community involvement, Lisa is the right choice at this time to lead the EDC forward.”

Sarasota County Commission Chair Alan Maio, who serves on the EDC board, said he values the organization’s unique purpose and work and is confident in the choice of leadership.  He also noted that he is committed to helping the EDC in its alignment with the board of county commissioners and the broader community.

Krouse stated that she has been impressed with the staff at the EDC and their work, particularly their agility in assisting with the Small Business Resiliency Loan Program and recent land use review and recommendations provided to Sarasota County. She is eager to work with the staff as well as the EDC’s board, investors, and partners to further strengthen the organization and deliver meaningful work on the community’s behalf.

“We have a great deal to do, including taking a fresh look at our strategies and processes,” she said, “but the one constant is that we will continue to serve our purpose, which is to advance a diversified and sustainable economy for all of Sarasota County and surrounding communities.”

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About the Sarasota County Economic Development Corporation

The Sarasota County EDC is Sarasota County’s economic guardian and the only entity focused solely on growing and diversifying the county’s business community. In existence since 2004, the public-private organization works to help companies in diverse sectors expand and establish in Sarasota County, contributing to an increase in the local tax base and additional employment opportunities while reducing vulnerability to external shocks that can undermine our community’s long-term economic health.

 For Media Inquiries: Tracy Knight / Knight Strategic Communications: [email protected] 941-777-8825