The South Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce’s chief operating officer and economic development director will join the City of Lone Tree’s staff late this month.
Jeff Holwell starts his new post as the city’s economic development director April 28.
“There really is no other community in south Denver that has as much opportunity as the City of Lone Tree for corporate and other types of business growth,” said the father of two, who lives in Arapahoe County. “This is a great, long-term professional opportunity. I think the economic culture of Lone Tree is very bright. I plan to contribute all of my talents to the cause.”
Lone Tree will pay Holwell, who left his position with the Centennial-based chamber on April 18, an annual salary of $99,000.
A south Denver native, Holwell also worked as director of business development in the State of Colorado’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade. Those factors combine to give him an in-depth knowledge of state and south metro economics.
Lone Tree City Manager Seth Hoffman, who stepped into the city’s lead role late last year, said Holwell fits with the city’s near and long-range plans. A recent analysis focused on goals stretching from three to 20 years into the future.
“We really wanted to make sure we had the right talent and resources in place to implement the mayor and city’s council’s strategy and vision for the city,” Hoffman said.
That led to the search for an economic development director.
“I called a lot of people in the economic development business and asked, ‘If you could hire anybody, who would it be?’ ” Hoffman said, adding Holwell’s name came up repeatedly.
Holwell will assume many of the responsibilities that now fall to business development coordinator Torie Brazitis, who is moving into a new city position as management analyst. Holwell will oversee economic activity not just on the as-of-yet undeveloped east side of RidgeGate, but the nearly developed west side, the pending redevelopment of the Entertainment District, the Park Meadows area and retention and growth of existing businesses.
“I think the opportunities are significant throughout the city,” Holwell said. “Yes, the new development on the east side of course is the long-term activity. But the existing businesses, as well as the existing opportunities, will also be significant. Even north of Lincoln, there is still plenty of opportunity for business attraction and retention.”
Holwell joined the staff of the South Metro Chamber in 2011 as the director of its Economic Development Group. He added the title of COO in the summer of 2013.
His departure came about three weeks after the resignation of the chamber’s longtime president and CEO, John Brackney.