Friday, February 21, 2014

Port of Douglas Hires Economic Development Manager

By Mark Edward Nero

The Port of Douglas County, located in the north-central Washington city of East Wenatchee, said Feb. 18 that it has hired a Kittitas County official as its new economic development manager.

Kittitas County Chamber of Commerce economic development director Ron Cridlebaugh was selected from a pool of 19 applicants, including six finalists who were interviewed for the post.

Cridlebaugh has held the position of executive director for the Ellensburg Chamber of Commerce, Ellensburg Business Development Authority and Economic Development Group of Kittitas County. During that time, he has assisted hundreds of small businesses.

Cridlebaugh’s experience also includes involvement in the operation of the Ellensburg Business Incubator and MicroLoan Programs. The incubator program nurtures small and startup businesses, while the MicroLoan program provides small business loans to businesses that haven’t been able to qualify for traditional financing.

Additionally, he has handled the business recruitment for Kittitas County along with managing industrial properties owned by the Ellensburg Business Development Authority and City of Ellensburg. He has also has managed the Ellensburg and Kittitas County tourism programs and has guided downtown revitalization projects.

“We hope to utilize his extensive experience in business development and recruitment, downtown revitalization and collaborative work efforts to move economic development forward for Douglas County and the entire region,” Port of Douglas County Executive Director Lisa Parks said in a statement announcing the hire.

Cridlebaugh’s expected to begin work at the port on March 17.