Brian Cole of Building Communities Appoints Bob Shepard Chief Operating Officer of Growing Economic Development Strategic Planning Company

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A national economic development strategic planning firm has recently taken a step to manage its projected growth for 2012. Economic development expert and regional sustainability planning specialist Brian Cole has appointed economic development veteran Bob Shepard as Chief Operating Officer for Building Communities as the company ramps up to complete as many as 100 local economic development strategic plans throughout the United States in 2012.

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Bob’s experience both in business as well as in economic development makes him the perfect person to help Building Communities through this period of fast growth

Building Communities, Inc. a community-based economic development strategic planning company, has announced the appointment of Bob Shepard as Chief Operating Officer effective December 1, 2011. Shepard will be responsible for company operations and staff deployment, and will be based in the Boise, Idaho office.

Shepard has performed economic development activities in Oregon, Idaho and Arizona for the past 12 years. He has also owned a number of private businesses including four restaurants in New Mexico and Idaho, a property management company, an RV transport company, and several others.

Shepard has an MBA from the University of Northern Colorado and has completed a number of certifications through CDFA, IEDC, and Eastern Washington University. Shepard was the Regional Director for the Idaho Small Business Development Center at Boise State University, and has taught business and entrepreneurship classes.

Shepard is currently teaching Strategic Planning at Boise State University and has developed a syllabus for a Rural Economic Development Certification program that will be introduced in 2012 with University-based Extension Services.

“Bob’s experience both in business as well as in economic development makes him the perfect person to help Building Communities through this period of fast growth,” said Brian Cole, President. “More and more, communities are discovering the power that our new, objective, comprehensive, and expeditious approach to brings to economic development strategic planning.”

Community leaders that do not know which strategies to utilize to create jobs and improve overall quality of life utilize three strategic planning tools developed by Brian Cole that objectively identify their likelihood of success.

“No longer will communities have to guess at which strategies they should choose,” explains economic development expert Brian Cole. “Our computer-based analysis helps eliminate the local loud voices from the process, and brings a rational approach to local decision making.”

Building Communities, Inc. has experienced accelerated growth and anticipates over $2 million in contracts for economic development strategic plans and regional sustainability planning in 2012, and will collaborate with cities, counties, universities, Councils of Government, and other institutions to complete their mission. Shepard can be contacted at and 208.866.9030.

About Building Communities: Building Communities is an economic development strategic planning company assisting communities throughout the United States to envision and enact their future through unique, proprietary methods and software that expedites the ability of communities to select strategies that they can succeed with to create jobs and improve their overall quality of life. President, Author, and community and economic development specialist Brian Cole, brings 25 years of experience in planning and implementing successful projects, initiatives, and strategies. Find out more at the Building Communities website or read the blog.

About Brian Cole: Brian Cole has 25 years of experience in planning and implementing economic development projects, initiatives, and strategies as a local and state official, county commissioner, and as a private sector consultant and author. More on economic development expert Brian Cole can be found at


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