Shown, from left to right, are David Collett, Chattanooga area director, USDA Rural Development; Bobby Goode, USDA Rural Development state director for Tennessee, Beth Jones, executive director for Southeast Tennessee Development District and Chuck Hammonds, director of Community Development at Southeast Tennessee Development District.
USDA Rural Development recognized the Southeast Tennessee Development District with an award as a Premier Partner for 2011.
"Rural Development partners with a lot of organizations, but we wanted to recognize the Southeast Tennessee Development District because they play a role in the economic development of our rural counties," said David Collett, Chattanooga area director, USDA Rural Development.
Given on behalf of Bobby Goode, USDA Rural Development State Director for Tennessee, at the SETDD board meeting in December, the award stated:
Southeast Tennessee Development District, a local governmental assistance agency, continues to work in partnership with USDA Rural Development in Tennessee; and whereas Southeast Tennessee Development District has partnered with USDA Rural Development to assist local governments with assessing the needs of the Bledsoe, Bradley, Grundy, Hamilton, Marion, McMinn, Meigs, Polk, Rhea and Sequatchie County and Catoosa, Dade and Walker Counties in Georgia; and whereas the investment of time, capital and expertise by the Southeast Tennessee Development District staff has facilitated job creation and improved economic vitality and promise of the region by actively supporting new business and working with existing businesses to help them become more profitable. Further by working with local and state partners, they promote area growth through local projects aimed at improving water service throughout the area.
On receiving the award, SETDD’s Executive Director Beth Jones said, “We accept the award with pleasure and appreciate the recognition not only of this critical partnership but also of the hard work of the staff of both of the agencies. It is our honor to be able to serve municipalities and counties in Southeast Tennessee and Northwest Georgia and work with this important partner.”