Arizona Commerce Authority Awards Vision Grants to Five Rural Areas

Grants to enhance economic development infrastructure in rural regions


PHOENIX, AZ (September  5,  2012) — The  Arizona  Commerce Authority is pleased to announce the five awardees of its Vision Grants, a reimbursable grant program designed to enhance the economic development infrastructure of rural regions around the state. The total grant amount of $250,000, will be allocated up to $50,000 each,  to the following communities committed to enhancing and expanding economic development systems, establishing projects and programs focused on creating jobs, and increasing wages —particularly in base industries:

  • Economic Collaborative of Northern Arizona (ECONA);
  • Real AZ Development Corridor (RADC);
  • Central Arizona Regional Economic Development Foundation (CAREDF);
  • Greater Yuma Economic Development Corp. (GYEDC); and
  • Prescott Valley Economic Development Foundation (PVEDF).

“The ACA’s Vision Grants further our commitment to advancing the economy in rural Arizona,” said Sandra Watson, Interim President and CEO, Arizona Commerce Authority. “These communities present incredible opportunity for economic growth and stimulation, and we are proud to propel projects that will attract industry, create jobs and increase wages.”


Awardees were selected based on their proposed projects’ economic impact, quality of project plan, demonstrated local support, and more. Proposed projects must be started and completed within one year, and awardees were selected by a panel of four members of the Governor’s Rural Business Development Advisory Council as well as the ACA’s senior vice president of rural development, Keith Watkins.


“These grants are assisting rural Arizona communities with the creation of more strategic economic development and marketing plans, the funding of labor market assessments to better understand available workforce, and the facilitation of long-term strategy to further develop base sectors,” said Keith Watkins, Senior Vice President Rural Development, Arizona Commerce Authority. “The ACA is committed to helping fund  these  critical  growth  projects  to  ensure  a  stronger,  more  viable  statewide economy.”


Media Contact

Nicole McTheny, Arizona Commerce Authority, (602) 845-1231, [email protected]


About the Arizona Commerce Authority

The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) is the state’s leading economic development organization with a streamlined mission to grow and strengthen Arizona’s economy. The ACA uses a three-pronged approach to advance the overall economy: attract, expand, create – attract out-of-state companies to establish operations in Arizona; work with existing companies to expand their business in Arizona and beyond; and help entrepreneurs create new Arizona businesses in targeted industries. For more information, please visit and follow the ACA on Twitter at @azcommerce.