The CEO of Community Futures Development Corporation is retiring

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Diane McKinnon, Executive Director of Renfrew County Community Futures Development Corporation (RCCFDC), has announced her retirement effective April 30.

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McKinnon has been the able and competent leader of the RCCFDC since 2003, the company said in a statement.

“Diane has a solid reputation as an outstanding leader within the company, the business community and all levels of government,” said Ray Bonenberg, RCCFDC Chair. “She has overseen the growth of an investment portfolio from $4 million to more than $15 million.”

Established in 1986, RCCFDC is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors and professional staff to support small and medium-sized businesses in their efforts to advance economic development in Renfrew County through a variety of business development activities. Over 922 companies have been lending customers during that time and the company has loaned over $41.7 million in Renfrew County.

“Diane has led the incredible small business relief effort in response to the COVID-19 outbreak for the past two years,” said Bonenberg. “More than 5 million US dollars were quickly and unbureaucratically distributed in the form of loans to those in need.”

Over her years, McKinnon has guided the company through multiple community economic development projects such as the Ottawa River Heritage Designation, the Royal Ontario Winter Fair, and funding programs such as the Ontario Self-Employment Benefit Program (OSEB), the Eastern Ontario Development Program (EODP) and the Rural Innovation Initiative Eastern Ontario (RIIEO). During this time, RCCFDC has been a supporter of summer students, youth interns, and worked with community organizations and partners throughout Renfrew County to facilitate economic development projects with the goal of strengthening competitiveness, business growth, and innovation within the business community.

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RCCFDC has assisted in the funding of projects including the Economic Feasibility Study for Algonquin College’s Pembroke Campus, which ultimately resulted in the new campus on the Pembroke waterfront. This was made possible through the Eastern Ontario Development Program, an approximately $8 million funding framework for eligible projects that provides non-refundable cash contributions to businesses and organizations. The EODP has been an instrumental program in providing needed support to businesses and organizations throughout Renfrew County. Over the past five years, EODP has invested $2.25 million in 42 projects, benefited more than $5.6 million and impacted more than 630 jobs in Renfrew County. Following the completion of the EODP in March 2018, RCCFDC supported the Rural Innovation Initiative Eastern Ontario Project in Renfrew County, supporting the transition and growth of traditional small and medium sized businesses, manufacturers and communities into the new rural economy. This project was instrumental in injecting an additional $1.25 million into the region, mobilizing more than $4.84 million and impacting 375 jobs.

“We will miss Diane very much and wish her all the best in her well-deserved retirement,” said Bonenberg.

The recruitment process for her successor is currently underway.

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