The Licking County Chamber of Commerce announced March 19 that Dan Evers had been hired as its new economic development director.

The Licking County Chamber of Commerce announced March 19 that Dan Evers had been hired as its new economic development director.

According to a press release, Evers will be tasked with handling the economic development efforts of the chamber and of the newly formed Grow Licking County Community Improvement Corp. He will also work with the Columbus2020 regional partners.

"Dan's knowledge, background and enthusiasm will serve Licking County well," said Cheri Hottinger, chamber president, in the release. "This is an exciting time for Licking County. This hire shows our commitment to helping our existing companies expand and thrive as well as the priority of getting our message out to potential companies looking to locate here."

Evers previously served as township administrator for Deerfield and Sugarcreek townships, as well as director of business and economic development for the city of Hamilton, the Downtown Dayton Partnership and as economic development administrator for Butler County. He is a certified economic development professional, certified in financial analysis and structuring of development financing through the National Development Council.

Evers begins his position April 9.

Jennifer McDonald, chamber vice president. said Evers has many qualities that set him apart from the roughly 20 other applicants for the position.

"He did have a lot of economic development experience," she said, adding that Evers has a master's degree, which was preferred in the job description, and his certification was a strong factor in his hiring.

McDonald said Evers worked in a county similar in size to Licking County, where he successfully attracted economic development. He's also been an administrator, which is important, McDonald said, because the CIC is a public/private partnership and it was important for candidates to understand the government side as well as the commercial.

Additionally, she said Evers was eager for the job and seemed very personable, which were two much-desired traits.

Evers said one his first orders of business will be to "get out in the community" and meet with strategic partners and get to know Licking County government and business leaders. He said the CIC is in the process of creating a strategic plan and he hopes to take part.

"I'm very excited about the process of participating in a strategic plan," Evers said.

He said that in his career he's been fortunate to be part of efforts in recruitment and retention of a wide variety of economic development, from manufacturing to medical.

"We're aware of his skills and we're fully supportive," said Licking County Commissioner Tim Bubb. "It'll be a challenge for him."

Since Evers is the first person to hold the position, Bubb said, he'll be setting many of its standards.