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Lake County, FL Office of Elevate Lake

OPEN FOR BUSINESS: New Economic Development team ready to support local businesses and tourism

Release Date: September 19, 2011

TAVARES — The newly formed Lake County Office of Economic Development & Tourism announced in July a plan to implement a regional approach to economic development in the County. The plan calls for a team of economic development and tourism coordinators to support three micro-regions within the County located in the northeast, northwest and southern regions.

To implement the plan, the County recently restructured the office staff so that an economic development and tourism coordinator will work closely with local businesses and municipalities in their assigned regions.

“The County has many challenges when trying to offer support to our local businesses using a centralized approach,” said Scott Blankenship, Director of the Office of Economic Development & Tourism. “By dedicating an expert to cover each of the three different regions, not only will there be a more hands-on approach to supporting our local businesses, but also better coordination with our municipalities, which creates synergy to economic development initiatives throughout the region.”

  • Adam Sumner, CEcD - Sumner came to Lake County from the City of Las Vegas Redevelopment Agency, where he worked as a Senior Economic Development Officer. He is a Certified Economic Developer, and received a BS Degree in Aviation Administration.  Sumner will be targeting the northwest region of the County to include Fruitland Park, Lady Lake and Leesburg.
  • Robert Chandler – Before coming to Lake County, Chandler worked for Fishkind & Associates, Inc. in Orlando, Fla. for the past six years. He has an undergraduate degree in Psychology, and an MBA from the University of Florida. Chandler will be covering the northeast region, which includes Astatula, Howey-in-the-Hills, Eustis, Mount Dora, Tavares and Umatilla.
  • Cecelia Smith - Smith joined Lake County after previously working with the City of Tavares’ Economic Development Agency. She has a Masters in Public Administration. Smith’s focus will be the south region of the County which encompasses Clermont, Groveland, Mascotte, Minneola and Montverde.

For more information about the Office of Economic Development & Tourism, call (352) 742-3918 or visit

Lake County media contact:
Kelly Lafollette
Information Outreach Director
Office: 352-343-9603; Cell: 352-455-0445

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