The Craft of Deal Structures
Using recent case studies and drawing on real-world experiences, our panel of presenters (representing an EDO, a municipality and a CDFI), who’ve worked together on numerous projects and utilized a wide array of funding programs and mechanisms to bring their projects to fruition, will explore various elements of economic development finance (e.g., deal structuring, finance strategies, risk assessment, etc.), and discuss creative techniques and insights for getting even the toughest of deals done.
Chris Groner, Director, City of Erie Department of Economic & Community Development
Prior to becoming Director, Chris had been the City’s Enterprise Zone Coordinator. He served as a customer service point of contact for business and industry within the City of Erie helping companies find solutions to a variety of issues. His duties have included managing the City’s Enterprise Zone Loan Fund, Infrastructure Development Program Fund and the City of Erie Business Development Fund. These low interest loan programs have played a vital role in helping our businesses and industries retain and create jobs in our community. He also administered the City’s LERTA and Keystone Opportunity Zone programs.
Chris also worked as the City’s Accounting Supervisor where his primary duty was to prepare the City’s annual operating budgets and to provide reporting to both our auditors and to City Council.
He also served for 10 years as a supply corps petty officer and later as a logistics officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve.
Chris has over 25 years of experience in finance, real estate and logistics in both the public and private sectors.
Richard Novotny, Executive Director, Corry Area Industrial Development Authority
Rick Novotny serves as the Executive Director of the Erie County and City of Corry RDA along with the Corry Area Industrial Development Corporation and the Corry Industrial Benefit Association’s (501-C3). When Rick first assumed this role, the Community had just experienced significant plant closings and layoffs and was looking for leadership in reversing the downward economic trend. Rick, through the assistance of the PA DCED (in particular, the Enterprise Zone Program) has been able to create new employment opportunities for several thousand area residents while growing the industrial base of the community. Rick’s day to day responsibilities include managing multiple projects, a small staff of 7, budgets, and continual board and client interaction. Rick has a unique ability to find opportunity in the midst of adversity, and then using creative approaches turn those opportunities into community and economic successes.
In 1992, Rick was hired as the Economic Development Specialist for the Corry RDA and was put in charge of filling a newly built, near vacant (24,000 sq ft) industrial incubator. Soon after that, he acquired an Enterprise Zone Designation for the Corry Area and grew the revolving loan fund to over $8 million in 8 years. The economic activity caught the attention of the newly elected County Executive who encouraged Rick to take his expertise countywide. Rick was appointed Executive Director of the Erie County RDA in 2003 and the county provided and $8 million grant to launch a county-wide revolving loan fund. These loan programs have grown to over $22 million and industrial real estate holdings exceeded 200 acres and nearly 1 million square feet of leasable space. The ability to carry out these programs with a small dedicated staff has enable the combined organizations to be operationally self-sufficient while playing a significant role in the growth of the economic base of Erie County.
Prior to joining the Erie County and Corry RDA, Rick was employed in the Northwest Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission and before that owned and operated a franchise restaurant.
Rick earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Application and Information Systems from Clarion University in 1986 and completed a majority of credits towards an MBA at Clarion University.
T.J. King, Vice President, SBA Business Development Officer, First National Bank
T.J. King is a native of western Pennsylvania and a graduate of DeVry University in Columbus, Ohio. After graduation, he worked in business banking and commercial lending for Bank of America, Huntington Bank, and Bridgeway Capital.
T.J. joined the First National Bank Small Business Finance team in 2018, bringing with him over 13 years of lending experience and SBA expertise. As a Business Development Officer at First National Bank Small Business Finance, T.J. focuses on commercial real estate, construction loans, business acquisition and expansion, and debt refinancing.
T.J.’s lending experience helps him to provide access to capital to support the growth and success of local small businesses. No matter what industry they are in, T.J. enjoys helping small business owners succeed in their endeavors through the utilization of SBA loans. When he’s not at work, T.J. enjoys spending time with his wife, as well as boating, fishing, and hunting.
Register by September 19th to be included on the attendee list.
Attention Certified Economic Development Organizations: PIDA recognition has been granted for this training, which will provide 3.00 organizational PDUs (Finance).Note: This agenda is subject to change. We reserve the right to reschedule or cancel this offering. In the event of a cancellation, a refund will be provided to registrants.
On-site registration will take place on between 8:30 am and 9:00 am.