The Michigan Economic Development Corp. (MEDC) announced three new leadership positions that will help provide small businesses with more targeted, intentional support, while emphasizing its commitment to supporting businesses and communities across the nation.
The three new additions — Natalie Chmiko, Amy Rencher, and Matt McCauley — will support the MEDC’s overall mission to create economic opportunities throughout every region of the state and for businesses of all sizes.
“By welcoming Natalie, Amy, and Matt into these roles, we continue our work to make sure that everyone can see themselves in Michigan’s economic success,” says Quentin Messer, CEO of the MEDC.
“We remain committed to doing everything we can to make sure our impact is felt by rural, urban and suburban communities alike, because we know that economic development only matters because people matter. We are grateful that Natalie, Amy, and Matt have elected to join our team and are prepared to take on the hard work ahead.”
Chmiko will serve as senior vice president of small business solutions for MEDC. As the former vice president of small business solutions, she brings with her deep knowledge and familiarity of the MEDC, as she leads the international trade and Pure Michigan business connect teams along with its newly created small business services team.
Over the past eight years at MEDC, Chmiko has supported the evolution of impactful economic development tools for small businesses statewide including advocating the organization’s signature Industry 4.0 initiative to help small and medium-sized manufacturers adopt advanced technologies and compete in an increasingly digitized marketplace.
Rencher will serve as senior vice president of small business services. She brings 15 years of leadership experience in both profit and nonprofit sectors to the team with knowledge in program design and evaluation, project management, and process improvement initiatives.
Over the past seven years, Rencher worked her way up through leadership roles at TechTown Detroit, most recently serving as managing director of entrepreneurial programs and services, where she developed strategic partnerships and programming that drove more than $70 million in impact for more than 3,000 entrepreneurs.
McCauley will serve as senior vice president of regional prosperity for MEDC. In his current role as CEO of Networks Northwest, McCauley has a proven track record in leading a team to adopt a strength-based approach to drive growth throughout northwest Michigan.
McCauley has a rich background in advocacy on behalf of rural and diverse communities across Michigan, having provided testimony on the U.S. Farm Bill around sustainable development practices, and as a previous German Marshall Fund Urban and Regional Policy Fellow.
“We are thrilled to congratulate Natalie, Amy, and Matt on their new roles as we enter a year where support for small businesses and companies in every corner of our state will remain vital as ever, with SSBCI 2.0 funding being approved from the federal government and a continued focus on economic recovery following the pandemic,” says Jen Nelson, chief operating and customer experience officer of MEDC.
“With Natalie, Amy, and Matt at the helm of our small business and regional prosperity teams, we will continue setting the stage for Michigan’s economic growth for generations to come.”