TEMPLE, Texas—The Temple Economic Development Corporation (Temple EDC) today announced that the Board of Directors has hired David Blackburn as president. He will replace Lee Peterson, who announced his retirement earlier this month.

Blackburn has a 30-year career in local government service, most recently retiring in August from his position as city manager for the City of Temple where he worked since 2005. During that time, he also served on the Temple EDC Board of Directors.

“I believe my service on the board of directors for Temple EDC the past few years has prepared me to effectively lead as president,” Blackburn said. “There are not many projects or work that Temple EDC has been involved in that I am not already aware of. This will enable me to hit the ground running.” “I have always had an interest and a passion for economic development,” Blackburn continued, “and working to support business growth and development is some of the most satisfying and gratifying work I have done. Temple has an impressive history when it comes to business growth and development, and I’m excited about continuing to be a part of that.”

Temple EDC Chairman of the Board of Directors Bob Browder said he is excited about Blackburn’s new leadership role at the economic development corporation. “David Blackburn has an in-depth knowledge of Temple and he will bring an executive level of experience and leadership that will continue to serve our community at this critical time of growth and opportunity,” Browder said. “David has been instrumental representing Temple in economic development regionally and locally, serving on our board and collaborating as city manager with our staff to support business growth in Temple.”

On Blackburn’s first day as president Oct. 1, Hugh Shine will also become chairman of the Temple EDC Board of Directors.

Shine, who has served on the board of directors for several years, strongly supported the decision to hire Blackburn. “David has repeatedly demonstrated his ability to take very difficult tasks and prioritize the steps necessary to accomplish those tasks efficiently and timely,” Shine said. “His breadth and depth of knowledge will be a tremendous asset in bringing new development into Temple. We look forward to realizing all that he will accomplish and building on the foundation that our team has established under Lee Peterson’s leadership.”

Blackburn said he is excited about his new role at the Temple EDC. “I am truly honored to be given the opportunity to lead Temple EDC,” Blackburn said. “I have been impressed with the team that Mr. Peterson has put together, and I look forward to working with them to continue the good work that is being done to grow and expand the business community here in Central Texas.”

Charley Ayres, who has been with Temple EDC for over three years, and serves as Vice President, will continue to support the president in overseeing the direction of the organization as well as business recruitment. Director of Marketing Elizabeth Carlton, who joined Temple EDC in 2011, remains focused on public relations, trade show coordination, and special events. Director of Business Retention and Expansion J’Nan Cox has been with the organization since February supporting the existing industry program, workforce and education development, small business development and conducting industry outreach. Jennifer Avery joined Temple EDC in June as Director of Operations. Avery is responsible for overseeing operational duties, directing administrative and financial aspects for the organization.

More about David Blackburn

Prior to his service with the City of Temple, Blackburn was city manager for the City of Killeen. He also served as assistant city manager, deputy city manager and city attorney for the City of Killeen. Prior to his service in Killeen, Blackburn served as City Attorney for the cities of Texarkana, Texas and Plainview, Texas.Blackburn has served on multiple boards and commissions over the years.

Locally, he has served on the Temple EDC Board of Directors and as an ex-officio member of the Temple Chamber of Commerce. His regional board and commission service includes serving on the Killeen-Temple Metropolitan Planning Organization (a regional transportation planning body), the Brazos G Water Planning Group (a regional water planning body), and the Brazos River & Bay Basin Area Stakeholder Committee ( a regional water planning group).

Blackburn is also a past member of various professional organizations, including the International City/County Managers Association, the Texas City Managers Association, the Texas City Attorney’s Association, and the Association of the United States Army.

About Temple

Temple, Texas, is a community with a diverse economic base that includes healthcare, distribution and warehousing, and manufacturing as its foundation. Within 200 miles of a population of 19 million, Temple is in a strategic location that is central within the Southwest U.S. marketplace. Visit www.choosetemple.com.