Meeting in Atlanta last week, the Georgia Economic Developers Association recognized top deals of the year and the state’s leading economic developers.

The GEDA Deal of the Year Awards recognized outstanding achievement in the location or expansion of new businesses in the state of Georgia that meet community economic development goals and involve significant community program support, such as financial or permitting assistance, workforce development, state financial support, etc.

Winners were selected in three community categories: Small, Mid-Size and Large.

  • Small: Bacon County Development Authority for La Regina Atlantica
  • Mid-Size: Camden County Joint Development Authority for Plug Power
  • Large: Dalton-Whitfield County Joint Development Authority for GEDIA Georgia

Tim Evans, the vice president of economic development for the Greater Hall County Chamber of Commerce, received the 2021 Rip Wiley Award for Professional Excellence.

The award is named after H.W. “Rip” Wiley, who worked for the Georgia Department of Industry, Trade and Tourism (now the Department of Economic Development) as director of the Industry Division when he passed in October 1978. This award was established upon his death to be presented to the person in economic development who best represents his spirit of excellence.

Jason Dunn, the GEDA chair of the Professional Development Committee and the executive director of the Fitzgerald-Ben Hill County Development Authority, received the GEDA Committee Chair and Member of the Year Award.

Rachel Barnwell, the manager of economic development programs for the Development Authority of Bulloch County, was recognized for her efforts as a member of the Annual Conference Committee.

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