Director of biz group honored by industry

The executive director of the Grand Junction Economic Partnership is one of the economic-development profession’s “40 under 40.”

Kelly Flenniken was selected from more than 150 applicants nationwide as one of the leaders of the economic-development industry.

“It’s a pretty big deal,” Flenniken said Monday. “I certainly hope it translates into more companies looking at Grand Junction because they know a quality person will be here to help them when they make a call.”

Flenniken has served as executive director of the partnership since October 2011. She had been interim director for five months before that. She worked for the Denver Parks & Recreation Department until moving to Grand Junction in 2008.

The recognition “comes as little surprise to those of us who know and work with her,” said Jay Seaton, chairman of the partnership board and Daily Sentinel publisher. “She deserves these kinds of public accolades, but what people may not realize is that she also does the nitty-gritty, behind-the-scenes work that actually gets things done.”

Flenniken was recognized for her work with the Grand Junction Economic Partnership to attract new business and help existing ones, all while working with state economic-development officials to promote development across the state.

She is the only economic-development professional in Colorado to be included among the “40 under 40.”

The award, designed to discover the economic-development profession’s rising stars, was managed by Development Counsellors International, a New York-based firm specializing in economic-development marketing.

The firm officially announced the winners Sunday in Orlando, Fla., and will feature an in-depth profile of each honoree on its website during 2013.


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