BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana Economic Development has preserved its status as an Accredited Economic Development Organization, or AEDO. The International Economic Development Council has conferred accreditation to the statewide economic development agency following a yearlong documentation process. LED remains the only state agency in the U.S. to earn this status.
LED first earned recognition as an Accredited Economic Development Organization in July 2018, joining 69 economic development groups in the world to secure this status. Since then, LED has maintained AEDO membership due to its record of success and service to the people of Louisiana.
“Louisiana Economic Development displays the professionalism, commitment and technical expertise that is deserving of this honor,” said IEDC President and CEO Jeff Finkle.
To be formally accredited by IEDC, an economic development organization must participate in a broad documentation submission and onsite visitation process. A comprehensive peer review process measures the organization against commonly held standards in the profession such as strategy, organizational structure, funding, program offerings and staffing. To be reaccredited, an AEDO must demonstrate successful results against a series of recommendations from the initial evaluation.
“Louisiana Economic Development remains the only accredited statewide economic development agency in the country, which is an affirmation to Louisiana’s business community that this administration is serious about growing our economy,” said Gov. John Bel Edwards. “Under the leadership of Secretary Don Pierson, LED has delivered on its commitment to create new opportunities for our people and support the small business community in our state. IEDC’s evaluation of LED and its efforts has shown once again that Louisiana is meeting its mission to drive a strong economy.”
As part of its reaccreditation process, LED was measured on its successes since the previous evaluation, including providing innovative small business programs, championing the resources and progress of Louisiana’s rural areas, and amplifying the state’s aspirational economic goals and sector diversification efforts.
“It is an honor to have LED’s accreditation renewed by IEDC,” Pierson said. “LED continues to work hard and rises to meet every challenge. We are developing new and innovative initiatives to support Louisiana small businesses, fostering growth in our rural communities, and sustaining the state’s economic momentum. Our award-winning organization also works to diversify our economy and prepares cities and towns for economic success. It is evident that we have accomplished great achievements while navigating unprecedented challenges. This reaccreditation confirms that the hard work, passion and dedication of the entire LED team is recognized nationally and internationally. I am exceptionally proud of LED’s many accomplishments and it is my distinct privilege to lead this team of professionals.”
Louisiana Economic Development is responsible for strengthening the state’s business environment and creating a more vibrant Louisiana economy. LED cultivates jobs and economic opportunity for the people of Louisiana, and promotes business opportunity for employers of all sizes. In 2020, LED attracted 58 new economic development projects representing over 11,600 new jobs, 8,600 retained jobs and more than $12.7 billion in new capital investment. LED’s Small Business Services team, in conjunction with the Louisiana Small Business Development Center Network, assisted more than 17,500 Louisiana small businesses and entrepreneurs in 2020. For more information, visit OpportunityLouisiana.com.