The Hardin County Chamber and Business Alliance has made a major staffing announcement as the Board of Directors has appointed Hardin County native Jon Cross to serve as its new President/CEO and Director of Business Development. He will start his position on October 1st, 2014.
Cross will focus his efforts towards economic and business development, advancing Hardin County’s market awareness on a regional, national and global scale.
He will work with various local, state and national business, educational and agricultural leaders, government officials and economic development associations, as well as site selectors, real estate professionals and industry experts to help generate new growth, jobs and investment opportunities to advance Hardin County’s economy.
“We are very excited to welcome aboard a Hardin County native who has the combination of local knowledge, diverse leadership experience, national business and political relationships, as well as a deep regard for his community,” said Tim Street, Board Chairman of the Alliance. “Jon’s broad experience in strategic planning, marketing, public relations, advocacy, fundraising and business and community development will be very beneficial to strengthen our organization.”
“I also want to thank our previous chairman Chip Root and the Alliance board for their work in making this possibility come to fruition,” said Street.
In addition, as President/CEO, Cross will serve on the Alliance board to help develop and execute both the short-term and long-term goals and strategic priorities of the organization.
“I look forward to returning home to help my community grow and prosper,” said Cross. “Hardin County has been, and will always be, a great place to live, work, and prosper. I look forward to spreading that message near and far, as we strive to make Hardin County a model community in Northwest Ohio.”
“Hardin County is open for business and in a prime position to welcome those looking to return, relocate, reinvest and revitalize our communities,” said Cross
In addition, board member Chip Root commented, “With Jon’s leadership, the Alliance board and staff have been undergoing a transition period over the past six months to incorporate strategic planning and long-range vision planning discussions to prepare for prosperous opportunities over the next 5 to 10 years. This also includes some reorganization within the Alliance to operate at a greater professional and competitive level.”
The announcement also includes a positive transition for Jacqualine Fitzgerald. She will eventually serve as the Director of the Downtown Development Division, focusing her time and talents to the redevelopment, beatification and revitalization of our historical downtown communities throughout the Hardin County.
Economic Development Director John Hohn will work together with Jon Cross during a positive and planned transition phase over the next 15 months, starting in October.
Cross has nearly two decades of political, government and business experience. His diverse background in both the public and private sector has provided him the opportunity to consult with and work for some of the top business and political leaders throughout the country. Some include the New Majority Political Action Committee, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard Carly Fiorina, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, real estate developer Richard Allen of The Allen Group, and former Ohio Auditor and Attorney General Jim Petro.
Cross recently served as the Executive Director of the New Majority, one of the largest, most influential and highly respected Republican political action committees in California, whose membership includes some of the top business leaders from various industries throughout the state.
In addition to his political work, Cross served as the Director of Corporate Marketing for The Allen Group, a privately held real estate development company. During the company’s acquisition of 8,000 acres for commercial and industrial development, Cross rebranded their real estate focus, developed cutting-edge site selection tools and launched a national marketing platform for their multimodal “Inland Port” logistics parks throughout California, Kansas and Texas.
Cross graduated from Kenton High School and The Ohio State University. He and his wife Christina, a practicing attorney, and family will be relocating to Hardin County from California.