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JACKSON, Miss. — April 11, 2016 — Waggoner Engineering, a full-service economic development, program management and engineering firm, is proud to announce that Dirk B. Vanderleest, a consultant in Waggoner’s strategic services division, will speak on a panel at the National Airport Economic Development Conference (AAAE), held April 11-13 in Raleigh, N.C.
Vanderleest will headline “The Airport’s Role in Local Economic Development: Lead, Join or Follow Airports take various roles in recruiting and retaining industry on and around the airport” session on April 12.
“We are excited for Dirk and his leadership at the National Airport Economic Development Conference,” said Joe Waggoner, PE, founder and CEO of Waggoner Engineering. “Dirk’s experiences and knowledge will provide an intriguing and informative panel perspective.”
Vanderleest has more than 30 years of airport management and economic development experience, having most recently served as the CEO of the Jackson Municipal Airport Authority (JMAA) for 24 years. He co-founded the Greater Jackson Alliance, spearheaded the design of the Vision 2030 strategic plan for JMAA, and developed the largest (by acreage) airport industrial park in Mississippi. Vanderleest holds a bachelor’s degree in aviation management from Auburn University. He has served in Vistage International’s CEO peer group and on the board of the Methodist Rehabilitation Center in Jackson, Miss.