Alabama native Troy Post will take the reins of the Columbia County Development Authority next month.
Mr. Post was in Evans on Tuesday, visiting with county officials and business executives. He was offered the position of executive director of the county Development Authority last week.
"This is one of several trips I'll probably be making to Columbia County until I'm here permanently at the end of January," Mr. Post said from the Development Authority office in Evans. "I certainly think it's a good idea to get to know the area as best I can."
A 20-year veteran of business development, Mr. Post is the manager of the Bessemer, Ala., Development Board.
"It's a blue-collar community with a heavy manufacturing base," Mr. Post said of Bessemer. "A challenge for that community has been to diversify its offerings. We've been looking into retail, service centers and even amusement parks to build tourism."
Following a philosophy of diversification should serve him well in Columbia County, Development Authority Board Director Stan Shepherd said.
"We've had a lot of retail growth in recent years, which is certainly something we like to attract because it brings in tax dollars, but we also want to build our tax base with industry and in other areas," Mr. Shepherd said.
Though diversification seems to be a key area for the new executive director, Mr. Post said he has no immediate goals.
"Once I'm here permanently, I want to sit down with the board and develop some goals together," he said. "I want to get their direction on what they believe is important for the community and follow through with that."