TROY – Veteran economic developer Wiley Blankenship has been named director of the Center for International Business and Economic Development at Troy University.
Blankenship has been president/CEO of the Coastal Gateway Regional Economic Development Authority since 2005. The Authority is a partnership between Clarke, Choctaw, Conecuh, Escambia and Monroe counties.
"Mr. Blankenship possesses a unique blend of local and international economic development experience that is ideal to fulfill the mission of our center," said Dr. Judson Edwards, Dean of the Sorrell College of Business and the Center's former director.
"Under his leadership, I have no doubt we will expand our educational and technical assistance activities, thus providing a positive impact for many Alabama communities," he said.
Blankenship earned degrees from Auburn University and the University of Georgia's Institute of Organizational Management, and is a graduate of the Economic Development Institute at the University of Oklahoma. Prior to his work with the Authority, Blankenship was a service partner with Funding Solutions, an Austin, Texas-based community and economic development firm and consulted with a number of Alabama development organizations.
From 1995 until 2000, he was vice-president of Business Development and Workforce Development for the Decatur-Morgan County (Ala.) Chamber of Commerce.
Since 2001, Blankenship has served as a guest lecturer at Auburn University for the Economic Development Institute, where he taught courses on developing and implementing rural retail development programs and community development programs. He has also served on the board of directors of the Business Council of Alabama, the Southwest Alabama Workforce Development Council-Region 9 and the Alabama Technology Network.