Engagement & Partnerships

Two highly qualified professionals work in the role of Engagement & Partnerships for Ohio Southeast Economic Development (OhioSE). Ed Looman and Destiny Bryson split the 25-county region in half with Looman covering the easternmost counties and Bryson in the south. Ed and Destiny can plug communities and partners into OhioSE and the JobsOhio system for help and guidance on economic and community development strategies and resources. Bryson and Looman work with county economic development organizations, local elected officials, policy makers, chambers, CVBs and more to increase strong collaboration throughout the OhioSE region.


OhioSE Engagement Goals

  • To increase awareness of OhioSE and JobsOhio and the resources available to help southeastern Ohio’s communities and businesses  
  • To increase community and regional competitiveness and preparedness for economic development 
  • To develop and buildout strategic partnerships with key stakeholders

OhioSE Overview

OhioSE is a private non-profit economic development corporation that works with companies to facilitate growth, capital investment and job creation throughout southern, eastern and southeastern Ohio. A team of eleven covering the 25-county region, together we are responsible for project management, a robust business retention & expansion program (BRE), business development and attraction, site readiness, marketing, engagement and stakeholder relations and research support. All are vital components that make the OhioSE region competitive in the economic development process.

As the official JobsOhio regional partner, OhioSE serves as the field staff for JobsOhio. The team connects companies with resources needed for new investment and growth, as well as providing access to incentive programs, and serves as a liaison to facilitate and expedite business development projects. 

OhioSE is a sister organization to Appalachian Growth Capital (AGC). AGC is a registered CDFI, providing financial assistance to companies throughout the region (the Ohio Development Services Agency recently awarded $10 million to them for small business lending). Both OhioSE and AGC are subsidiaries of the Appalachian Partnership Inc.  

Why OhioSE?

  • OhioSE and JobsOhio have recently developed new tools to assist communities with site development. The OhioSE region won over $18 million, more than any other region in Ohio, through the JobsOhio Site Redevelopment Pilot Project in 2016 through 2018. Recently, nearly $6 million was awarded in the region through the JobsOhio-OhioSE Site Development Initiative. These important investments are targeted at making ready industrial sites that can accommodate new investment and job creation economic development projects.
  • OhioSE and the Appalachian Partnership Inc., with funding from JobsOhio, completed a broadly participatory regional economic development strategic plan, the Prosperity Plan, to guide development efforts across the region. This plan was the first time the region united behind a common set of strategies for growing the business economy of the region. It includes four key categories of work: Business Voice, Competitive Assets, Talent and Economic Development.

Job Creation & Retention

Since OhioSE’s inception in 2011, JobsOhio and OhioSE have supported regional projects that have resulted in (check back often; these numbers continue to grow):

  • 175 Projects
  • $10,975,731,787 in new capital Investment
  • 7,279 new jobs with $241,676,360 new payroll
  • 20,774 retained jobs with $1,038,910,413 retained payroll

Site Readiness

Economic development is not only working with companies to support new business attraction and existing business expansion/retention. It takes great effort and commitment from communities to prepare industrial sites and buildings to compete for projects. More than $50,000 was provided through the Site Development Initiative for various studies at the Jefferson County Industrial Park, and that is just one example.

Utilizing the JobsOhio Site Revitalization Program, significant investment came from JobsOhio to support acquisition and redevelopment of brownfield (former use) industrial sites in the region. The OhioSE project team worked with local economic development offices to make these projects a reality. Yorkville Intermodal Terminals was awarded $5 million to redevelop the property.


Click to download/view Engagement collateral

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