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Michael Hughes to Serve as Executive Director of the Paulding County Economic Development Organization

Michael HughesPaulding County, Georgia – The Paulding County Economic Development Organization (EDO) Board of Directors has selected Michael Hughes to serve as its Executive Director.
“The EDO board of directors, with input from local and statewide stakeholders, identified key character traits we were looking for in candidates early on,” said Brian Stover, Vice-Chair of the Paulding County Commission. “At the top of that list was an experienced community and economic development professional with proven results. Excellent collaboration and relationship-building skills, strong communication skills in terms of listening, writing, verbal and digital were also a part of that weighting the scale. Michael fits these traits and has a demonstrated track record as a leader in the economic development field. He is a great fit for this position, this community, and we are excited to have him joining our team”. Hughes is scheduled to fill this new role on Monday, February 10, 2020.
Hughes currently serves as the Economic Development Division Manager for Cobb County as part of the Community Development Agency. In this capacity with Cobb County for approximately 25 years, he has been responsible for developing and administering a variety of business recruitment/retention initiatives, economic incentive programs, innovative economic development programs (i.e., business concierge program, business walks program, entrepreneur/business start-up grant program, façade improvement program, etc.). During his tenure, Cobb County has experienced significant economic development activity in the form of job creation and capital investment derived from various companies deciding to establish a presence in the community. Some of these companies include Home Depot, HD Supply, Dade Paper, FedEx, FedEx Ground, GE Energy, Novelis, and Thyssenkrupp Elevator.
Michael Hughes is a graduate of California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Urban Planning. He has approximately 33 years of professional experience as a City Planner in Los Angeles and Pasadena, California; Atlanta, Georgia; Cobb County, Georgia; and with LAW Engineering and Environmental Services, Inc.
Mr. Hughes has lived in the Atlanta area for nearly 30 years and began his professional career in Georgia with Cobb County in April 1990 as Senior Planner/Intergovernmental Coordinator in the Community Development Agency. In October 1998, he was appointed by the Cobb County Board of Commissioners to a leadership role as head of Economic Development for Cobb County. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), a graduate of Leadership Cobb (Class of 1999), successfully completed Cobb County’s EXCEL Management Development Program (Class of 1998-2000), the Regional Leadership Institute Program (a program sponsored by the Atlanta Regional Commission, October 1999), and the Chamber’s Honorary Commanders Program (2000). Hughes has been active in the community over the years serving as a member of the Leadership Cobb Governing Board, Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board of Trustees, and the Tommy Nobis Center Community Advisory Board. He is a long-time member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.
He is a past recipient of the “Mack Henderson” Public Service Award (2003) presented annually by the Cobb Chamber of Commerce and the “Golden Goose” Award (2003) presented annually by the Cobb County Board of Commissioners and the County Manager.
“The opportunity to lead this newly established economic development organization at this point in my professional career is an exciting opportunity that I look forward to,” says Hughes. “I believe my extensive professional experience with Cobb County has prepared me to take on this new and welcomed opportunity in a community like Paulding County that is well-positioned for growth.”
Michael resides in Mableton, Georgia with his wife Carmen of 28 years and they have 3 children (Michael II, Maya, and Maxwell). Hughes and his family are active members of Ben Hill United Methodist Church.