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Reed axed as Halifax County IDA project manager

Jeff Reed is no longer project manager for the Halifax County Industrial Development Authority.

According to Authority Executive Director Matt Leonard, he made the decision to terminate Reed.

The termination took place Friday following a meeting of the authority board, and Leonard confirmed Reed was in the building earlier that day.

In a brief written statement concerning Reed’s departure, Leonard said, “All personnel decisions are mine. I won’t comment further, except to say that personnel decisions can be difficult.”

When contacted Monday, Reed said he was in “absolute shock.”

Reed was hired as project manager in January 2009 by former Authority Executive Director Mike Sexton and charged with recruiting new business and industry.

For the past four years and four months during his time here, Reed said on his Linked In site he has developed a pipeline of prospects … across market sectors including advanced manufacturing, data/call/customer care centers, corporate headquarters, retail, professional, research and development, restaurants and hospitality by cultivating strong relationships, providing outstanding customer service and effective information in a timely manner. 

He was a member of a team that announced 460 new jobs, more than $186 million in new investment and saved 843 existing jobs since January 2009. 

In addition he said he worked with board and elected officials to develop or redevelop product including pad ready sites and rehabilitation of a shuttered manufacturing facility. 

He also organized three hugely successful familiarization events for site selection consultants, magazine writers, allies and leads to introduce them to Halifax County as well as expanding the role of social and electronic media in marketing efforts to increase reach in response to declining marketing dollars.

Prior to coming to Halifax County, Reed was employed as assistant director of the Danville Office of Economic Development.

He also worked as a special assistant to the president of Glenville State College from 2001-2003, managed Mountain Made Ventures, a national technology transfer center for two years, served as executive director of Region VII Planning and Development Council from 1997 to 1999, as director of community development and planning for the City of Bennettsville, S.C. from 1996-1997, served as assistant city/county planner for Greenwood County, S.C. from 1991-1996 and as Conway, S.C. city planner from 1989 to 1991.

He also currently owns and serves as president of Grassroots Solutions, LLC., a consulting firm that specializes in rural economic development. 

Ironically, at Friday’s IDA board meeting Leonard reported to members activity for prospects is increasing in the county.

“I think Halifax has done a great job of preparing itself for the recovering economy,” he said, adding the board would discuss the activity of prospects in more detail behind closed doors. 

On Monday morning, Leonard said, “The IDA remains dedicated to its mission of improving Halifax County through increased employment and economic growth. We also understand our duty to the citizens of Halifax County to meet our mission as effectively and efficiently as possible. We will continue forward toward those goals.”

Reed described his employment in Halifax County “as an absolute pleasure. I’ve loved every second of it. I have worked with outstanding professionals, and some great things are in the future for Halifax County. I’m fortunate I was able to be a small part of it.”