Orlando-area economic development executive to head Hampton Roads group
An Orlando-area economic development executive has been named the new president and CEO of the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance.
Rick L. Weddle will join HREDA in April. He has been president and CEO of the Orlando Economic Development Commission since March 2011.
“This position is one of the most critical in our region,” John Padgett, chairman of the board of HREDA, said in a statement. “We needed someone who understands the national and global economy, is both personable and aggressive and also a quick study. Rick Weddle is that person.”
Weddle will succeed Kevin Sweeney, a retired Navy rear admiral who has been interim director of HREDA since the resignation of Darryl Gosnell early last year.
Weddle currently heads an organization with 26 employees that represents Orange, Seminole, Lake and Osceola counties, and the city of Orlando.
During Weddle’s tenure, the Orlando area saw the creation of 17,000 new jobs with a combined annual payroll of $800 million and the location or expansion of 150 facilities and the investment of $1.1 billion.
Before Orlando, he was for seven years the president and CEO of the Research Triangle Foundation in North Carolina, owner and developer of The Research Triangle Park. During that time the park attracted projects investing more than over $800 million and creating more than 6,200 jobs.
He also has led the Greater Phoenix Economic Council and the Toledo, Ohio, Regional Growth Partnership.
Weddle is a native of Oklahoma and a graduate of the University of Oklahoma.