Louisiana Economic Development Undersecretary Earns Certification

Annevilla Websize[1]BATON ROUGE — Louisiana Economic Development Undersecretary Anne G. Villa has been named a Certified Economic Developer by the International Economic Development Council. This recognition denotes a mastery of skills in economic development and professional attainment, and a commitment to personal and professional growth.

With eight years of direct experience in economic development, Villa administers LED’s offices of management and finance, human resources, performance management and reporting, entertainment industry development and business incentives.

“Undersecretary Anne Villa leads many vital operations here at LED, and her commitment to the economic development profession in Louisiana is further validated by this prestigious CEcD accreditation,” said LED Secretary Don Pierson. “Economic developers use this accrediting process to hone their skills to improve opportunities for individuals, businesses and communities. I congratulate Anne on this significant accomplishment, which reflects well on all of us at LED as we continue our work of cultivating jobs and economic opportunity for the people of Louisiana.” 

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The CEcD designation recognizes qualified and dedicated practitioners in the economic development field and sets the standard of excellence within the profession. Certified Economic Developers work with public officials, business leaders and community members to demonstrate leadership that builds upon and maximizes the economic development sector. There are more than 1,100 active CEcDs in the U.S.

To earn the designation, experienced economic development professionals must complete six training courses, then pass a rigorous and comprehensive examination that tests knowledge, proficiency and judgment in 11 key areas. Villa focused her efforts on business retention and expansion, finance and credit analysis, marketing and attraction, strategic planning, managing economic development organizations, real estate development and reuse, and workforce development strategies.

Before joining LED, Villa spent more than 20 years in the private sector, most recently as vice president of operations and finance for MDI Entertainment LLC, a Scientific Games company, where she managed daily operations, vendor relations, customer service, strategic planning and forecasting. She also served in the logistics industry for 10 years as a finance manager for Exide Technologies and Ryder Systems Inc. She holds a B.B.A. in accounting from Georgia State University and is a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Government Financial Manager.

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