LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - After16 months of searching, the city of Lufkin has a new Economic DevelopmentDirector.
"…Thatperson that goes out there, that meets with our businesses and tries to meettheir needs first," said Keith Wright, Deputy City Manager.
ThadChambers started in the position March 5th and he says histransition in to Lufkin has been a smooth one.
"LearningLufkin is not very hard the people here are great everyone has been helpful ofcourse city staff," said Chambers.
Chamberssays he has 12 years of economic development experience and he believes thecity has a regional draw for large manufacturers
"Ibelieve strongly in industrial development and the jobs that it will bring tothe quality of life that it will bring," said Chambers.
Project 800 is still inthe permitting stages, but once everything is finalized through the city the700 mega- watt power plant is expected to create about 40 jobs. Holmes Smokehouseis expected to create hundreds over the next few years.
Anddeputy city manager Keith Wright says that right now that is the city's focus.
"Shortterm we need to ensure Holmes Smokehouse is up and running, long term we needto help Project 800 develop and come to fruition," said Wright.
Chamberssays the partnership of industry and local retail will greatly benefit Lufkin'sgrowing economy.
"I also believe in downtown, theredevelopment going on there is great and I also believe in paying attention toretail," said Chambers.
Chamberssays he hopes to continue to build on the work the city has done so far, hisfocus right now is getting outside of the office and building relationships inthe community.
This afternoon Chambersreceived a warm welcome.
The Angelina CountyChamber of Commerce hosted a small reception for him this afternoon.
City officials including Mayor Bob Brown, LPDChief Gerald Williamson and State Representative Trent Ashby were just a few tostop by and welcome the new economic director.