Susan Norris was named the 2022 Nebraska Economic Developers Association (NEDA) Professional of the Year in the community category on May 12 in Valentine.
Pierce County Economic Development Board members Josh Sirek and Plainview City Administrator Jeremy Tarr made the trip with Norris to congratulate her on the award.
The award was presented by NEDA, the largest association of economic development professionals in Nebraska at its Annual Conference.
Norris is the Director for Plainview and Pierce County Economic Development (PCED). She was recognized for her accomplishments and dedicated service to economic growth in the State of Nebraska.
Norris is involved with NEDA and the Northeast Nebraska Economic Development Network, as well as the Plainview Community Development Authority, Plainview Chamber Executive Board, Plainview Community Building Steering Committee, Pierce Advancement a committee, and Pierce Chamber Executive Board to name a few.
Since 2017, Norris has led Plainview and PCED to bring in over $3.7 million in grants, programming, and place-making activities to the four rural communities in Pierce County. She saw a need to energize and activate communities, encourage new leadership, and plan for the future. The results are 23 new businesses added in Plainview. A significant impact for a rural community with a population of just 1,250.
PCED also worked with 81 businesses after the historic flood of 2019 to re- open and received a $500,000 Disaster Housing grant to assist homeowners with fixing their homes to pre-flood condition. Norris also assisted communities with supports for businesses affected by the pandemic shutdown.
From her nomination:
“Susan has proven herself to be an economic catalyst for the Pierce County and region. She provides sound justification and knowledge that assists county and community leaders with economic growth decisions. She embraces shared leadership to help her communities build the future they envision. No one economic developer can create change without community support, Susan has successfully networked individuals who are interested in change and willing to create change within their communities. Her dedication and leadership can be described as- let’s win together and create a better tomorrow.”
The NEDA award plaque