Congratulations to the 2012 Innovation Award Winners

For 26 years, NADO’s Annual Innovation Award program has honored members who have had significant and positive impacts on their regions through innovative approaches to problem solving and program delivery.  We are pleased to announce that the 2012 slate of awardees includes 64 impressive projects representing 52 NADO members from 22 states!  Click here to view the full list (PDF).

NADO congratulates the 2012 Innovation Award-winning projects.  This annual awards program acknowledges creative approaches to regional community and economic development throughout the nation.  The winning projects represent the innovative and strategic approaches that regional councils are employing to strengthen and enhance their regions.  We applaud their efforts and impact!

The projects will be recognized during NADO’s 2012 Annual Training Conference, to be held October 13-16, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  For more information, visit or contact NADO Deputy Executive Director Laurie Thompson at 202.624.5948 or [email protected].


Regional Planning Commission of Greater BirminghamBirmingham Region Accounts Receivable Lending Program

The Top of Alabama Regional Council of GovernmentsThe Alabama Consolidated Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy: A Prospectus for Sustainable Economic Prosperity


Northern Arizona Council of GovernmentsStatewide Energy Sector Partnership (SESP)


Southwest Arkansas Planning and Development District, Use of Comprehensive GIS Data in Disaster Recovery


Sonoma County Economic Development BoardState of the County Breakfast


Central Florida Regional Planning CouncilPreparing for the Future in the Heartland:  Regional Land Use and Affordable Housing

North Central Florida Regional Planning CouncilNorth Central Florida Strategic Regional Policy Plan

North Central Florida Regional Planning CouncilNorth Central Florida Economic and Disaster Resiliency Study


CSRA Regional CommissionPicture Grovetown Urban Redevelopment Plan

Georgia Mountains Regional CommissionTy Cobb Regional Medical Center

Middle Georgia Regional CommissionGeorgia Economic Development Fiscal Impact Model

Southern Georgia Regional CommissionCoPRS Comprehensive Police Reporting System


East Central Iowa Council of GovernmentsLinn County’s City/County Strategic Growth Plans and Fringe-Area Agreements

East Central Intergovernmental AssociationDubuque Smart Travel


Bluegrass Area Development DistrictTool Set for Inventory and Maintenance of Retro Reflectivity Signs

Bluegrass Area Development DistrictThe Bluegrass Help-At-Home Worker Registry

Buffalo Trace Area Development DistrictIncreased Training for Regional Advancements in Nursing (I-Train)

Green River Area Development DistrictStop Senior Hunger

Lake Cumberland Area Development DistrictHouseboat to Energy Efficient Residences(HBEER)

Pennyrile Area Development DistrictGreenville Downtown Revitalization Project

Purchase Area Development DistrictEmergency Preparedness Backpacks for Child Care Centers


Northwest Michigan Council of GovernmentsPlacemaking in Northern Michigan


Arrowhead Regional Development CommissionNorthern Aero Alliance

Mid-Minnesota Development CommissionCity of Willmar Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan


Central Mississippi Planning and Development DistrictCity of Magee’s Innovative Way to Attract Economic Development and Create New Job Opportunities

East Central Planning and Development DistrictLauderdale County Call Center Project

East Central Planning and Development DistrictTown of Pachuta Senior Citizen Center

Northeast Mississippi Planning & Development DistrictDennen Steel/Yellow Creek Industrial Port Authority Improvements

South Delta Planning and Development DistrictMobile Outreach Skills Training (MOST)

Three Rivers Planning and Development DistrictThree Rivers Regional Emergency Notification System


Boonslick Regional Planning CommissionVillage of Silex, Missouri Community Relocation Project

Missouri Association of Councils of GovernmentMulti-Jurisdictional Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan for Missouri’s Electric Cooperatives

Missouri Association of Councils of GovernmentMissouri Watershed Planning and Wastewater Study


Great Falls Development AuthorityWest Bank Redevelopment Project

Great Falls Development AuthorityMontana Eggs Expansion


Western Nevada Development DistrictSET/CEDS Development in WNDD Region


Kerr-Tar Regional Council of GovernmentsTriangle Worksource

Land-of-Sky Regional CouncilWNC Forest Products Cooperative Marketing Project

Mid-East CommissionBeaufort County Resource Connection (BCRC)

Mid-East CommissionAquifer Strorage and Recovery Project

Piedmont Triad Regional CouncilAdvanced Manufacturing Academy

Piedmont Triad Regional CouncilForsyth County Real World Event

Western Piedmont Council of GovernmentsStudent Growth Estimation Models for the Catawba County School System

Western Piedmont Council of GovernmentsFuture Workforce Alliance: A Partnership for Education and Economic Progress


Northeast Oregon Economic Development DistrictMicroenterprise Development – IDAs and Business Education

South Central Oregon Economic Development DistrictSCOEDD Woodstove Replacement Program


North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development CommissionNorth Central Pennsylvania Patnership for Regional Economic Performance


Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of GovernmentsWorkforce Training Collaboration

Lower Savannah Council of GovernmentsEastern Orangeburg County Sustainability Study

SC Appalachian Council of GovernmentsUpstate Aging & Disability Resource Center Website – A statewide template for South Carolina


First Tennessee Development DistrictNortheast Tennessee Neighborhood Stabilization Project

Southwest Tennessee Development DistrictREDI College Access Program


Capital Area Council of GovernmentsPecan Street Innovation Cluster

Lower Rio Grande Valley Development CouncilRegional Economic Adjustment Plan for Building Disaster Resilient Communities (Regional EAP)

South Plains Association of GovernmentsBuilt to Weather Any West Texas Storm

South Plains Association of GovernmentsToday’s Kids Under Attack

Texoma Council of GovernmentsTexoma Regional Economic Dashboard

Texoma Council of GovernmentsTexoma Council of Governments Economic Impact Statement


LENOWISCO Planning District CommissionAppalachian Prosperity Project – A Collaborative Model for Advancing Education, Health, and Economic Prosperity in Southwest Virginia

New River Valley Planning District CommissionBUILT NRV

Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional CommissionSave-A-Ton

Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional CommissionRoanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Economic Development Map Tool


North Central Wisconsin Regional Planning CommissionWood Technology Center of Excellence

North Central Wisconsin Regional Planning CommissionCommunity Economic Recovery Guidebook


2023 Impact Awards

The primary applicant must be a NADO member. Project partners, both NADO and non-members, can be recognized under "Project Partners" below.

Primary Project Contact:
This person will be the designated point of contact for all future awards-related correspondence.

Organization Address

Project Location (if different from Organization Address)

Executive Director

Additional Organizational Information
Please upload your organization's logo which will be included on the winning project award certificate.

Project Information
This title will be printed on the award certificate for winning projects and in all 2022 NADO Impact Award materials and cannot be changed.

Project Summary & Questions
Please craft clear, thoughtful, and engaging responses to the following questions. Use the following sections to tell us how your project has made an impact, such as its use of creative funding mechanisms, efforts to create efficiencies or reduce costs, unique partnership models, and emphasis on building resilience and/or enhancing your region's quality of life.

For award-winning projects, the information provided below may be used verbatim to inform project descriptions that will be published in the 2023 NADO Impact Awards materials and included on the NADO website.

Please submit at least one photo showing your project in action. Please keep file size to a minimum (<2Mb) and use JPEG format. If uploading multiple files, ZIP files prior to submitting. If you have trouble uploading images they can be directly emailed to Brett Schwartz at [email protected] Include the project title they correspond to in the subject line of your email.

Note: Submitted photos may be used in NADO Impact Awards materials and in other NADO published materials with credit to your organization. Please also consider submitting photos for NADO's 2023 Photo Contest, which will be held this summer.

Your application is not submitted until you are directed to a confirmation page. If you have any questions or are unsure if your application has been submitted, please contact Brett Schwartz at [email protected]

Contact Melissa Levy

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Joe McKinney serves as Executive Director of the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO). Headquartered in Washington DC, NADO provides advocacy, education, research, and training for the nation’s 500+ regional planning and development organizations.

Joe has thirty-one years of experience having served in city, county, regional, national association, and government management since 1991. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Policy Analysis from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is a candidate for a master’s degree in Public Administration from UNC-Chapel Hill.

McKinney has provided congressional testimony on numerous occasions regarding the importance of regional development organizations in helping shape the nation’s economic growth. He is nationally recognized for promoting innovative solutions in areas such as planning and economic development, workforce development, transportation and transit, and aging services.

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