WE ARE AMERICA’S JOBS TEAM.

America’s future relies on people like you to foster a dynamic economy. It’s a big responsibility, but you are not alone in shouldering the weight. You are part of America’s Jobs Team!

You know—as do we—that the business of creating jobs is hard work, requiring more than just a little bit of elbow grease. You’ve got to have: deep industry knowledge; community and workforce familiarity; an ability to form deep relationships and create unity; perseverance; and the drive to keep growing.

Over the years, the Consultant Connect team has seen many amazing economic development warriors battling for their communities. We are connecting with these fellow community champions to dive into how they got to where they are, what lessons they have learned along the way, and what inspires them daily. We firmly believe that when leaders get better, communities thrive!

Listen to the America’s Jobs Team podcast below, or find it on iTunes.

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Episode 018: Jeff Mayes | Consumers Energy
Episode 018: Jeff Mayes | Consumers Energy 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Nick Riashi talks with Jeff Mayes. Jeff shares how he makes deliberate commitments to learn about things that make him uncomfortable. He talks about how he transitioned from politics to economic development and what he has learned along the way. Jeff also shares his advice on how to…

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Episode 017: Heidi Smith | Tennessee Valley Authority
Episode 017: Heidi Smith | Tennessee Valley Authority 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Heidi Smith joins Carla Sones for an interview exploring Heidi’s leadership journey. Heidi shares some great advice about leading by example, especially with regards to having a “do whatever it takes to get it done” attitude. She talks about why it’s crucial to own your mistakes and why…

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Episode 016: Brian Hilson | Economic Development Association of Alabama
Episode 016: Brian Hilson | Economic Development Association of Alabama 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Brian Hilson, Rural Development Specialist at the Economic Development Association of Alabama and former CEO at the Birmingham Business Alliance (BBA), shares his insights on leadership. His passion for leading with goodwill and integrity is clear. Brian talks about the importance of being an open communicator and having…

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Episode 015: David Rumbarger | Community Development Foundation (Tupelo, MS)
Episode 015: David Rumbarger | Community Development Foundation (Tupelo, MS) 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: David Rumbarger joins Carla Sones to share his leadership journey and insights. David talks about how constant change is a challenge for today’s leaders and his advice for emerging leaders of “we did this, not me did this” is so simple yet so powerful. David shares who in his life…

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Episode 014: Carol Henderson | Cushman & Wakefield
Episode 014: Carol Henderson | Cushman & Wakefield 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Carol Henderson talks about why keeping people engaged is such a challenge in today’s workplace climate. She shares her insights on vulnerability and gives some amazing advice for emerging leaders. Carol’s authenticity shines through the whole interview, especially when she talks about her focus to stay inquisitive and…

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Episode 013: Ann Miller | Buda EDC
Episode 013: Ann Miller | Buda EDC 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Ann Miller, Executive Director at Buda Economic Development Corporation, talks with Carla Sones about her leadership journey. She talks about why having the courage to inspire others is so pivotal to her leadership style, and she shares how her mom’s fight with cancer inspired a passion for positivity…

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Episode 012: Kurt Foreman | Delaware Prosperity Partnership
Episode 012: Kurt Foreman | Delaware Prosperity Partnership 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Kurt Foreman, CEO at Delaware Prosperity Partnership, joins Carla Sones to talk about his leadership journey. Kurt shares his insights on the challenge of jadedness in the civic arena, as well as the danger of thinking we are indispensable. He talks about the importance of creating energy for…

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Episode 011: Jeff Pappas | ESRP
Episode 011: Jeff Pappas | ESRP 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Jeff Pappas, Executive Vice President of Site Selection and Brokerage at ESRP Real Estate Services, shares thoughts on generational differences and how he sees those playing out in the workplace, as wells as the 3 Hs that keep him growing and developing. Jeff talks about the importance of…

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Episode 010: Alex Philips | City of Burleson, TX
Episode 010: Alex Philips | City of Burleson, TX 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Alex Philips, economic development manager at City of Burleson, Texas, joins us on the podcast. Carla and Alex share a dynamic conversation that dives into how Alex’s father inspired enthusiasm for his work in him, as well as why Alex finds humility to be such an important trait.…

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Episode 009: Dennis Fraise | Lee County Economic Development
Episode 009: Dennis Fraise | Lee County Economic Development 150 150 America's Jobs Team

This Week on America’s Jobs Team Podcast: Dennis Fraise (Chief Operating Officer at Lee County Economic Development) and Nick Riashi talk all things leadership. Dennis shares advice about building your own brand with integrity, how to continue challenging the status quo and why having joy in your job is so important. Dennis is the chief…

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