Kennett area names new economic development director
09/26/2017 12:19PM ● Published by Richard Gaw
Following an extensive nationwide search, Nathaniel Echeverria has been named as the Director of Economic Development for the Borough of Kennett Square and Kennett Township.
Echeverria will begin his new position on Dec. 4, and will work in the Historic Kennett Square office on State Street in Kennett Square. He was chosen from a field of nine final candidates.
A native of Media, Pa. and a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with an advanced degree in Urban, Community and Regional Planning, Echeverria, 34, is currently the Director of Policy and Operations for the San Jose Downtown Association (SJDA), where he is responsible for assisting downtown small businesses and developers through the city permitting process, connecting businesses with various economic development incentives and staffing the city’s development and urban design review committee.
Principally, the mission of Echeverria's new position will be putting the Kennett Regional Economic Development Study into action, which includes a broad outline of economic and community development plans, programs and services in the borough and the township, as created by Historic Kennett Square, the Economic Advisory Committee and the borough's municipal staff.
The Selection Committee, comprised of leaders across various disciplines within Kennett, unanimously chose Echeverria as the top candidate after a rigorous interview process.
“We received three glowing reviews from his working partners, and we felt his thoughtful presence yet authoritative knowledge within this field would fit perfectly in Kennett. He can make things happen,” said Historic Kennett Square Executive Director Mary Hutchins.
“Those of us who have had the pleasure of meeting Nate are excited about him becoming part of our team and are confident that he will be able to steer the economic development activities in a responsible and strategic manner.”
Hutchins said Echeverria’s first few weeks will be spent meeting the stakeholders in the region and sitting down with borough, township and Historic Kennett Square officials.
“One of the keys to Echeverria’s success will be keeping open communication lines with HKS, the borough and the township so we are all on the same page and rowing in the same direction,” Hutchins said.
For Echevarria, his new role dovetails his love for Chester County with the opportunity to work with local stakeholders.
"I think several towns throughout Chester County, like Media and Kennett Square, are really poised for interesting moments in their development and growth," he said. "One of the main things that appealed to me about this position was the collaborative effort that the borough and the township put into the economic plan.
"It spelled out all of the signals about how they both want to properly manage growth. It's tough for a small town that is experiencing an economic rise from the market to determine the best path forward. For instance, where I am in California is growing too fast, whereas in Philadelphia, they're not experiencing the growth that want to see. Yet in Kennett Square and Kennett Township, it's sort of a nice in between."
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