The Economic Development Alliance of Jefferson County, Arkansas, was created in 1994 as a non-stock, not-for-profit corporation and became operational on January 1, 1995. The Alliance was formed to unify community and economic development efforts in Pine Bluff and Jefferson County.
The Alliance has two divisions:
The Pine Bluff Regional Chamber of Commerce
The Jefferson County Industrial Foundation
The Pine Bluff - Jefferson County Port Authority
The Arkansas River Regional Intermodal Facilities Authority
Jefferson Foundation and
Jefferson Investors, Inc.
are affiliates of The Alliance. A separate board of directors governs each of these organizations but all share common quarters and a common staff. The result of unification has been increased efficiency and effectiveness.
A board of trustees comprised of proven leaders governs The Alliance. Those currently serving are:
Mac Bellingrath, Chairman; president, B3 Properties, Inc.
David R. Bridgforth, Vice Chairman; attorney at law and partner, Ramsay, Bridgforth, Robinson & Raley, LLP
Steven Brown, Secretary-Treasurer; senior vice president, Relyance Bank
David C. Bush, Ex-officio Director; senior vice president/manager- Credit Card Division, Simmons First National Bank
Marty Casteel, ; executive vice president, Simmons First National Bank
Rob Cheatwood, Ex-officio Director; vice president-operations, A-Team Temporaries/Snelling Personnel
Duke Fakouri, Ex-officio Director; president, M.K. Distributors, Inc.
Carla Martin, Ex-officio Director; Dean, UAPB School of Business and Management
Jack McNulty, attorney at law, retired
A full-time professional staff manages the day-to-day operations of The Alliance, its divisions and affiliates. Those currently serving as members of the staff are:
Lou Ann Nisbett, President and CEOCaleb McMahon, Director, Economic Development
Rhonda Dishner, Executive Assistant-Economic Development
Ann Williams, Director, Pine Bluff Chamber, Leadership Pine Bluff
Also part of The Alliance staff Dr. Mike Gunter, part time economic development coordinator; Art Norris, consultant for The Bioplex; and Jim Bacon, consultant for military affairs.