125 East Eighth Ave.
Eugene, OR 97401

(541) 682-6503
Sarah Means

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Community & Economic Development 

"Developing Our Economy, Improving Our Community"

 Who We Are


Sarah Means
Economic Development Manager

Kim Thompson
Economic Development


Kathy Dyer
Economic Development Specialist

What's New 

Rural Economic Development Specialist to Focus on Rural Communities

Kim Thompson has been selected to support rural economic development efforts as an analyst in Lane County’s Community and Economic Development Office.

“I am excited to have Kim on board,” said Economic Development Manager Sarah Means. “Our rural communities are incredibly diverse, from coastal communities to mountain towns and everything in between, and the opportunity to provide dedicated support for their efforts is something we have been working toward for some time.”

Thompson will be responsible for fulfilling the vision of the County’s Rural Prosperity Initiative, which was created to partner with rural communities to support their unique needs and efforts to create vibrant economies throughout rural Lane County.

“Our county is so spread out and we have so many different geographies and industries, it can be difficult to know what every community needs,” said Thompson. “It’s important to have someone coordinating the effort and ensuring every voice is heard. My intent is to be a strong advocate and helpful liaison between our local communities and the County.”

Thompson graduated from the University of Oregon with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and Business Administration. Prior to joining Lane County, she most recently served as a workforce analyst with the Oregon Employment Department for five years, focusing on Lane County. Thompson also has extensive experience implementing economic development programs and strategies. She currently serves on the Springfield Chamber Board of Directors, Eugene Chamber Economic Development Committee, Willamalane Parks Foundation, Springfield Library Board, and is a member of the Florence Chamber of Commerce.

Entrepreneur Training Funds Available

Lane County Community and Economic Development, Lane Workforce Partnership, Springfield Economic Development Agency, and Eugene Economic Development Agency are seeking organizations that are interested in applying for Entrepreneur Training Funds.  Click here to view the request for proposal. Submission deadline:  November 11, 2016.

***  RAIN Seeks New Executive Director  ***

The Regional Accelerator & Innovation Network (RAIN) is hiring a new Executive Director.  RAIN serves entrepreneurs and innovators in Oregon's South Willamette and Mid-Coast region by helping them turn ideas into high impact, innovative, traded-sector companies that can grow and thrive locally. 

For more information click here.

White House Economic Development Forum

Sarah Means, Economic Development Manager for Lane County, recently attended the White House Forum on Economic Development.  The forum was co-hosted by IEDC, SelectUSA, the National Economic Council and the White House Business Council.  Select attendees were invited from federal, state, private sector, economic development, infrastructure and economic opportunity entities. 

The forum is a mechanism to bring economic development practitioners from across the nation to gain a better understanding of how the policies being discussed and enacted in Washington translate in our local communities.  The President’s top advisors spoke on the Administration’s economic development accomplishments over the last eight years.  Also, part of the discussion included workforce development, foreign direct investment and infrastructure.  The Administration was also seeking input on priorities for the last days of President Obama’s term.  There was substantive dialogue and exchanges of ideas between attendees and the most senior decision makers involved in federal economic development programming and policies. 

Coquille Tribal Partnership Loan Fund

Community LendingWorks has partnered with the Coquille Indian Tribe to create the Coquille Tribal Partnership Loan Fund! This fund is to support creation and expansion of tribal businessess.  After months of planning, the contracts were signed this week!  Contact Community LendingWorks for more information.  541-345-0446 or 

Cereal for Youth Program

In 2005, three local businesses discovered children in Lane County were going to school without breakfast. They happen to be in the business of food, cereal and honey and thought they could work together and do something about the problem....and they did.
Click here for video Link

The Boze Noze Radio Broadcast

Listen as Lane County Economic Development Officer, Sarah Means, speaks with Lane County Commissioner, Jay Bozievich, about recent efforts to recruit, retain, and grow economic opportunities for Lane County. They also discuss recent news such as Avago's purchase of the Hynix site and future jobs at the Winnebago plant in Junction City.

Click here to listen

Regional Innovation Training Program    

Lane County Community & Economic Development Division presented $75,000 to Lane Workforce Partnership.  With the Board of Commissioners' unanimous vote, CED and LWP have, for the second year, matched dollar for dollar, for a total of $150,000 to co-sponsor a Regional Innovation Training Program.  Lane County’s contribution comes from video lottery allocations earmarked for economic development.

For more information, contact Sarah Means, 541.682.6503.


Tuesday, October 25th

United Airlines posts larges September gain at Eugene Airport

Oregon economist:  Real estate won’t spark next recession

Monday, October 24th

Springfield’s NEDCO uses United Way funds to teach financial literacy

Startup FOLD smoothing out the kinks in business model

Freres unveils innovative mass plywood panel


Wednesday, October 19th
Eugene-based recycling machine maker lands Oman contract

State continues fast job growth in September as unemployment rate holds at 5.5 percent

New tech cuts air pollutants