EDASC celebrating 50 years of economic development in Skagit Valley

EDASC celebrating 50 years of economic development in Skagit Valley Main Photo

15 Feb 2022

The Economic Development Alliance of Skagit County is 50!

EDASC has been Skagit County’s economic development organization since 1972, leading activities improving the local business landscape and quality of life for all residents.

Throughout 2022, EDASC will be celebrating its Golden Jubilee year, including with the in-person return of its Investor Appreciation Celebration this summer.

And coming soon, EDASC’s 50-year anniversary timeline will debut with the upcoming 2022 Skagit Business Guide, detailing the organization’s history, accomplishments and how it’s changed.

Unsurprisingly, its core activities have evolved to change with the economy and business best practices, as has the profession of economic development. EDASC’s top priority used to be attracting new businesses to Skagit County and hosting social and networking gatherings.

While EDASC still supports the recruitment and arrival of new businesses – such as the attractions of large employers Silfab Solar and Commercial Aircraft Interiors in 2021 – its focus lies more heavily on supporting existing ones and growing businesses locally. This focus is proportional to the fact that about 90% of job growth both locally and nationwide results from the formation of new and growth of existing businesses, and also that Skagit County does not have a large supply of available properties and industrial lands ready for development.

EDASC’s marketing targets particular properties and also particular industries and company sizes that would tend to find a Skagit location appealing.

EDASC also adjusted its emphasis on hosting social and fundraising events, pivoting to more mission-related gatherings such as Economic Forecast Night, Maritime Symposia, Investor Appreciation Celebration, business forums, and Opportunity Zones workshops.

EDASC purposefully avoids duplication with chambers of commerce and other nonprofit organizations in their networking and fundraising events. With staff time more focused on the mission, EDASC is now even more effective at carrying out economic development activities. In doing so, EDASC continues to diversify its funding sources, now including foundation grants thanks to its new 501c3 status.

Despite the evolution of the organization, EDASC’s core mission has remained, striving to achieve a prosperous community through creation of family-wage jobs, a stronger, more prosperous community, and a conducive environment for equitable, sustainable business growth while maintaining Skagit County’s natural beauty and quality of life.
EDASC, its Board of Directors and staff look forward to celebrating this milestone with the 275+ Investors and the entire community.