PEDA - Pennsylvania Economic Development Association


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  • 06/30/2017 10:08 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Yoga International Reaches Global Audience from Downtown Honesdale

    Headquartered in historic downtown Honesdale, Yoga International is one of the fastest growing companies in Wayne County, PA.  With 30 full-time employees, the company has rapidly expanded, adding jobs at a rate of approximately one every two months. 

    The company’s roots go back nearly 25 years when the renowned Himalayan Institute, located just north of Honesdale, published Yoga International magazine, which grew to be one of the foremost yoga publications world-wide.  Responding to the demand for online content, the Himalayan Institute developed a web-based version of the magazine, which ultimately spawned Yoga International as a separate company in 2013.

    With a global following, Yoga International streams high-quality yoga classes, workshops, and courses to hundreds of thousands, including over one million followers on Facebook, of dedicated yogis every month. 

    Yoga International covers a broad spectrum of topics including, beginners through advanced yoga, yoga for veterans, reducing stress and anxiety, and therapeutic techniques for back, neck, and shoulder pain.

    While the focus of the company is yoga training and wellness, it can be viewed as a tech start-up with a core value of embracing technology to share yoga more widely.  The company has its own in-house A/V, creative and marketing teams.  Filming and production takes place in their studio, as well as far off places such as Hawaii or California.  The opportunity to work in a small downtown community yet collaborate on projects with an international scope is an employment draw.

    Along with developing digital content, the company offers a full schedule of classes at their Main Street location.  The first floor of their building also houses a café and boutique, both featuring locally-produced products.

    With Yoga International’s growth came the need to renovate their work space to accommodate new employees.  Relocating an entire work crew presented a challenge, but Yoga International didn’t have to look far for a solution.  The co-working space at the nearby Stourbridge Incubator offered a temporary work place with high-speed internet access and a modern, open-office environment. 

    "We were fortunate to find the Stourbridge Incubator," said Travis Head, Chief Business Officer at Yoga International. "It provided all of the convenience of our office and combined it with a beautiful outdoor space that helped our staff stay active. Our team didn't miss a beat!"

    The Stourbridge Incubator is a community-based business incubator/accelerator with a technology focus.  Funding partners, which include the Appalachian Regional Commission, USDA Rural Development, Commonwealth Financing Authority, the County of Wayne, Ben Franklin Technology Partners, and local community, have invested over $1,075,000 to the development of the incubator facility.  The co-working space opened in July 2015 and averages 16 unique users and 1,000 hours of use per month.

    Wayne Economic Development Corporation (WEDCO) manages the facility on behalf of community partners.  WEDCO executive director Mary Beth Wood stated, “the coworking space provides a wonderful boost to entrepreneurs who need a robust broadband connection and access to specialized software and equipment that are generally not found outside an academic setting.  Hosting Yoga International for a few weeks so they could make room for more tech jobs was a perfect partnership.”

    For more information on either of these exciting community assets, visit or

    Story Credit:  Mary Beth Wood, Executive Director, Wayne Economic Development Corporation

    Photo Credit:  Troy Bystrom

  • 06/19/2017 10:44 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Jim Damicis is Senior Vice President at Camoin Associates, a leading, national economic development consulting firm with extensive experience in the northeast including Pennsylvania. Prior to merging with Camoin Associates, Jim built his company, PolicyOne Research, into a top research and analysis firm in Maine serving private and public sector clients throughout the Northeast.

    At Camoin Associates, Jim has leveraged his extensive background in analysis and strategy development to guide clients in leveraging opportunities and overcoming challenges to carve out a path for economic growth. In Allentown, PA Jim led an interdisciplinary team to analyze the city's urban-manufacturing industry and developed adaptive strategies to grow its manufacturing base and position itself to have a role in the significant growth occurring regionally in distribution. Jim worked with Groton, CT to diversity their economy and align the Town's land use regulations and economic development strategy with market realities. Last year, Jim helped the Newton-Needham Chamber launch a strategy to transform a community dominated by suburban office parks to a modern, mixed-use innovation district with national companies like Trip Advisor and NBC. In Northern New Jersey, Jim led a first-of-its kind Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for the New Jersey Urban Mayors.  These are just a few of the many projects Jim has led and in all cases takes a multi-discipline approach to problem-solving and implementation.

    Jim is a national leader in economic development, writing regularly on emerging topics, instructing the strategic planning certification course for the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), and speaking at conferences and webinars. He serves as a member of the International Economic Development Council’s (IEDC) Economic Development Research Partners (EDRP) program, is a past President of the Northeastern Economic Development Association and has served in leadership capacities for more than ten years with NEDA. 

    Follow Jim on Twitter at @jdamcis or send him an email at

  • 06/08/2017 10:22 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Click here to access the Young Professional Scholarship Request Form for PEDA's fall conference. This scholarship opportunity is made available through the generosity of FirstEnergy Corp and Team Pennsylvania Foundation.

  • 05/18/2017 11:19 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    By Pamela Shupp, President, PEDA

    I want to start out by thanking everyone who attended the spring legislative conference in Harrisburg. The content was great, the networking was great, and, of course, all the PEDA members, partners and sponsors who attended are great too! I was happy to participate in two dine arounds - a new idea we tried to expand our networking base and food horizons! I thoroughly enjoyed dinner on Monday and Tuesday evening at Bricco with some new PEDA members and some great economic development professionals! If you have the chance to participate in one of these dinners at future conferences I highly recommend it.

    At the conference, we adopted our legislative and policy priorities for 2017 (oh my goodness on my voice dictation the word policy just came out as prayer!). So we need your help to communicate these priorities to local legislators and elected officials. As you know, it is always an interesting time during budget season and we are seeing a lot of funding threats to economic development programming and incentives. Make sure your voice is heard and that you share specific stories about businesses and development in your communities and how they are impacted.  Please communicate back if there's something that you need PEDA to follow-up on.

    NOTE:  On Wednesday morning at 5:30 a.m. as I was leaving the conference to come back to Reading for a board meeting at which I was scheduled to present and then be back by 10 AM to rejoin the conference I had a little mishap. So while you were getting legislative and DCED updates, I was at urgent care being told that I broke my shoulder and was unable to return to the conference. I am sorry to have missed it and thank my colleagues who picked up my slack. Good news is that I will be all healed by the time the regional meetings roll around and I hope to see many of you during these summer meetings. Stay tuned for more details.

  • 05/18/2017 11:08 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    As Talen Energy's Regional Sales Manager, electricity supply, Robert Homa has built a strong and steady relationship with his clients in the mid-Atlantic region, where Talen Energy currently serves customers. During his 30 year tenure in the industry, Rob has gained expertise in energy market analysis, energy procurement strategies, demand response, cogeneration, energy efficiency/conservation, and utility rate analysis. Rob and his team, affectionately known as Team PA, create and deliver energy supply strategies that help end-use C&I businesses capture maximum benefits from the opportunities created by competitive energy markets. Electric supply is more than a commodity, it's a relationship.  Rob and his team nurture their client relationships and deliver comprehensive energy supply solutions that meet each client's specific needs.

  • 05/04/2017 10:06 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The window for submitting 2017 PEDA Membership Award nominations is now open. 

    It's been said that there is no greater honor than to be recognized by one's peers and, each year, our program seeks to recognize Pennsylvania's top economic development professionals, agencies, partners, projects and programs. Showcasing key accomplishments at the statewide level not only benefits those being honored, but also shines a light on the meaningful work being done by our peers in the economic development profession.

    Please take this opportunity to publicly recognize those who are most deserving. Decisions on winners are expected to be made in July and awardees will be notified as soon as possible in advance of PEDA's 2017 Fall Conference, where recipients will be recognized.

    Download nomination forms here. 2017 PEDA Membership Awards nominations must be submitted electronically to by Noon on Thursday, August 24, 2017.

  • 04/26/2017 2:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Pennsylvania Economic Development Association (PEDA) announced its FY2017-18 legislative priorities during its 2017 Spring Legislative Conference in Harrisburg this week.

    A press release has been issued highlighting the organization's top five priorities.

  • 04/07/2017 4:05 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Click here to read the Governor's proclamation.

    Click here to learn more about our 2017 spring legislative conference.

  • 04/07/2017 3:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Economic development is a complex balancing act between the macroeconomic policy agenda of the nation and the need to invest resources strategically in institutions and individuals at the local level who are actively pursuing innovation, entrepreneurship and increased production.

    This webinar will focus on the concept and practice of creating global partnerships to strengthen innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystems; and how those partnerships will increase the prospect of advancing commerce and trade between participating economies and accelerate business opportunities for all stakeholders.

    Our ability to solve complex economic development challenges and take advantage of opportunities is enhanced when you build effective networks within and across regions. A region that has invested in building effective networks based on clusters can more quickly match solution seekers with solution providers. Networks are enhanced through connection of, and participation by, diverse groups, institutions of excellence in research and learning, and leaders and role models who invite open participation of individuals and groups from across many disciplines.

    Learn more here.

  • 03/29/2017 10:16 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Laura Gitlin is a Senior Managing Director with Baker Tilly Capital, and leads the firm’s East Coast negotiated incentives practice. She has over twenty years of experience providing legal, incentives and location advisory services to private and public sector clients nationwide with a focus on projects in the Tri-State and Mid-Atlantic region. Laura specializes in evaluating, structuring and implementing incentives and financing packages for corporate expansions and relocations, and commercial, residential and mixed-use development projects. Prior to joining Baker Tilly, Laura served as Senior Counsel for over 14 years at Biggins Lacy Shapiro & Company, a location advisory firm, based in Princeton, New Jersey, after specializing in real estate law at Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 

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