FOSTORIA — Renee Smith, grants writer for Fostoria Economic Development Corp. and the city, has been named president of the economic development group, effective Aug. 1.
“Speaking for myself and the board of trustees, we are very excited to have Renee Smith, with her enthusiasm and energy, take over leadership of the organization,” said Chris Iannantuono, board chairman, in a news release.
As community grants writer for two years, Smith has submitted applications which have provided about $2 million for a variety of community projects, according to the release.
Prior to her work in Fostoria, she worked for non-profit organizations in Findlay.
She has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Findlay and co-authored three books.
“I am absolutely delighted to have been selected to lead this organization,” Smith said in the news release. “(Fostoria Economic Development Corp.) has a long history and is a well-respected organization in the field of economic development. Fostoria has a history as an industrial manufacturing community with a strong agricultural base, an extensive transportation network, both rail and highway, that I believe we can capitalize on in the future. It is a privilege to have been selected and I am anxious to get started.”
“I have the utmost confidence in Renee,” said Dave Whitta, a former board chairman, in a prepared statement. “We have been impressed with her ability to quickly move issues to a positive resolution and her broad involvement in the community. In a short period of time, her expertise has benefited the Geary Family YMCA, Greater Fostoria Community Foundation, the Fostoria Rail Preservation Society and many others.”
“I’ve seen Renee’s accomplishments as the city’s grant writer,” said Bridgett Mundy, vice chairman of the economic development group, “and am certain she will bring the same level of vitality and drive to our economic development program.
While Mayor Eric Keckler voiced support, too.
“Renee has been a tremendous asset to the community over the past two years,” he said. “I, as well as many other organization leaders, have seen her accomplishments and take charge attitude.”