Call for Nominations 2023

Nominations due by Aug 25th

WEDA presents three awards that recognize outstanding achievement in economic and community development across the state.  These include contributions by both individuals and by groups in our communities.  The three awards include:

The Linda Hewitt Memorial Community and Economic Development Award

Each year WEDA sponsors the Linda Hewitt Memorial Community Development Scholarship, which is awarded to a deserving community or economic development person or organization in Wyoming. This person does not have to be a WEDA member - but it must be someone with an impressive community and/or economic development track record.

This award recognizes a person or organization in honor of Linda Hewitt, who was economic development professional from Lander, past WEDA board president, and Wyoming Business Council Regional Director. Hewitt devoted much of her life to improving and growing her community and the state.

Nominate here

Previous award winners include:

2000 ~ Dave Reetz, Powell EDC

2001 ~ Mary Randolph, WRDC

2002 ~ Joe Coyne, CANDO

2003 ~ Jim Davis, City of Evanston

2004, Big Horn County Ec. Dev. Inc.

2005, Tom Barritt, President, Weston County Dev. Corp., Upton, WY

2006 Alan Moore, Idea, Inc./RECDA

2007 Randy Bruns, Cheyenne LEADS

2008 Rhonda Shipp, U.W. Cooperative Extension Service

2009 Pam Thayer, Rawlins Main Street DDA

2010 Karen Guidice, Chugwater Clerk /Treasurer

2011 Shawn Reese, WY Business Council

2012 Jo Ferguson, WY Rural Development Council

2013 Paula McCormick, McCormick Marketing

2014 Gary Michaud, City of Lander

2015 Dave Hanks, Rock Springs Chamber of Commerce

2016 Anja Bendel, Cheyenne LEADS

2017 Pat Robbins, South Central WY Regional Director Business Council

2017 Leah Bruscino, Northwest WY Regional Director Business Council

2018 – Cade Maestas, Lander EDA

2019 – Phil Christopherson, Energy Capital Economic Development

2021 – Kevin Kershisnik, IDEA Inc

2022-Robert Briggs, Associate Vice President for Institutional Research

The Wyoming Economic Development Innovation Award

The Innovation Award recognizes an innovative project significantly impacting a Wyoming community and its citizens. The award is intended to recognize participants involved in a Wyoming innovative economic development project and to highlight best practices. The award celebrates the partnerships, innovative aspects and economic development impact of a project. Review criteria include: 

The factors that make this project innovative, such as its use of creative funding mechanisms, efforts to create efficiencies or reduce costs, unique partnership models, techniques to build resilience or enhancing your region’s quality of life.

The project’s accomplishments or results to date, including the economic development impact on a community or region.

How partners came together to plan, develop and share the cost to achieve desired results for a specific purpose.

Nominate here

Past Winners Include:

2018 – Torrington Cobblestone Hotel Project

2019 – Big Horn Basin SHOPKO Closure Response

2021 – Fremont County Commercial Air Service 

2022 - National Museum of Military Vehicles in Dubois Wyoming

Advocate of the Year

In addition to honoring our Economic Development Professionals and projects, WEDA is looking to honor those people in our communities without whom our work could not be done. These advocates for economic development are the supporters, the facilitators, and the sponsors of our activities. Advocates may be:

  • EDO board members
  • EDO committee members
  • Elected Officials
  • City/County staff
  • Legislators
  • Volunteers
  • Anyone who gives of their time to support economic development in your community but does not do it professionally.

Nominate here

Past Winners Include:

2021 – Jeff Bumgarner, Vice President of Member Services at Powder River Energy Corp.  

2022-Cheyenne LEADS Board of Directors