(Quad Cities) The Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce announced today that veteran economic development staffer Liz Murray Tallman has been named Chief Economic Development Officer for the organization, effective immediately. The new role puts Tallman in charge of the development and oversight of all Chamber economic development activity, including business attraction, company retention and expansion, and entrepreneurial programming and support. She replaces Paul Rumler who left the organization in May to take a position with the Chamber in Grand Rapids, MI.
Currently serving as the Chamber’s Senior Vice President Economic Development, Tallman joined the Chamber staff in 2009 after serving as Vice President of Public Policy with the Quad City Development Group where she focused on enhancing employment and development at the Rock Island Arsenal. Prior to this, she was employed by the City of Davenport for four years as an economic development program manager, creating financial incentive packages and protocols, administering the City’s loan portfolio, and leading efforts related to brownfield revitalization, enterprise zones and older commercial corridor redevelopment. She also spent 15 years in various community and economic development roles at the Bi-State Regional Commission where she established working relationships with a wide array of local, state and federal government officials and agencies.
During her tenure with the Chamber, Tallman has facilitated a number of successful economic development projects that have added jobs, investment and tax base throughout the Quad Cities. Since the formation of the Quad Cities Chamber in 2009, Chamber staff has directly helped over 60 companies expand or relocate, resulting in over 6,000 jobs and $2.14 billion in economic impact. Most notably, Tallman was central to securing the expansion of Alcoa in 2011 and Kraft Heinz in 2015.
Chamber CEO Tara Barney touted Tallman’s broad based experience in both the public and private sectors as a distinguishing factor in her selection.
“Liz has had a long tenure in community and economic development in the Quad Cities. She has worked for the Bi-State Regional Commission, the City of Davenport and the former Quad City Development Group. There is no one who has more perspective on how to support clients, coach fellow staff professionals and work as a professional colleague with our partnering organizations, communities, and stakeholders than Liz. I can say with much certainty that the prospects and clients with whom she has worked are absolute in their praise for her style and capability. Indeed, Liz has been the professional in charge for most of the deals we have closed since our inception,” said Barney.
Rick Seidler, President and CEO of UnityPoint Health – Trinity, is Chair of the Chamber’s Quad Cities First board that oversees regional marketing for business attraction.
“Liz has been an influential thought leader and strategist behind many past and current efforts to stimulate growth in the Quad Cities region,” said Seidler. “Her colleagues in and outside the Chamber have long admired her ability to take a complicated economic development project from start to finish. She has a rare combination of technical expertise and a well-established network of community contacts that enable her to navigate successfully for any companies with which she is working.”
Tallman expressed her eagerness to continue working on economic development projects while taking on the role of team leader.
“Economic development is my passion. I love working with clients and seeing new companies locate in the region and others expand their operations,” said Tallman. “I’m honored to have been chosen for this new leadership opportunity and I look forward to being a coach as well as a player in the industry and organization I love,” said Tallman.