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Economic Development Discussions with Stephen Moret at the 2019 Governor’s Summit on Rural Prosperit

When it comes to economic development in Virginia, there is a lot to celebrate, Stephen Moret, CEO and President of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), said at the 2019 Governor’s Summit on Rural Prosperity.

And the good news is that it does include rural Virginia, too.

VEDP’s transformational goals for the Commonwealth, Moret said, call for robust state growth where every region in Virginia wins, including rural Virginia.

Those goals are on their way to being realized given that Virginia is beginning to close the gap between its average business climate ranking compared to other states.

But Virginia needs continued bold action to continue to make progress, Moret said, outlining the goals for VEDP and activities that impact rural Virginians.

Among those activities Moret highlighted to the attendees of the rural summit included the following:

  • VEDP is actively partnering with other economic development stakeholders across Virginia, including rural Virginia.

  • Rural think tank initiatives for economic growth in Virginia outlined a need to focus on rural marketing and positioning, ubiquitous broadband expanded site inventory, and a customized workforce.

  • VEDP is implementing a robust rural marketing program for Virginia and incorporating rural marketing into their social media strategy with posts highlighting regional assets, key companies, project announcements, available properties, case studies and more.

  • Virginia Economic Review Q3 2019 focused on America’s rural growth challenge.


Hosted by the Virginia Rural Center, the 2019 Governor’s Summit on Rural Prosperity took place Sept. 23-24, 2019 at The Inn at Virginia Tech and Skelton Conference Center and brought together state, business, and civic leaders to explore the future of rural Virginia. In addition to Governor Ralph Northam, other featured speakers included legislators from across the Commonwealth, Secretariats, business owners, educators and economic developers. Attendees came from 59 different counties across the Commonwealth, six different states and DC.

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