Who Moved My Smokestack – Guest Blogger Don Holbrook

I recently had an opportunity to become acquainted with Don Holbrook. Don is a highly successful economic development professional who specializes in structuring public backed inducement and incentive proposals that facilitate deal closures for capital investment projects. He has worked on over 100 projects to date and has a wealth of practical knowledge. Don is also a bit of a Renaissance man. He is a member of the board of directors of the International Economic Development Council, the IEDC, in Washington, D.C. Don is also on the CDC Small Business Board in San Diego, California, an SBA 504 lender covering California, Arizona, and Nevada.

If all that isn’t impressive enough, Don is also a partner/vintner in the award-winning Red Zeppelin Winery in Paso Robles, California and a published author.

I have Don as one of my friends on Facebook. He recently posted a comment about a new book he is in the process of doing research for. I thought it would be interesting to learn more about Don’s perspective around what it will take to become more competitive for global capital investment. I think you will be fascinated by his viewpoint.


Today America is caught in the worst economic storm in most of our lifetimes. How we react to this economic transition and what actions we take as citizens, communities and our national government are critical to how we weather this perfect economic storm… peak oil, peak energy production, peak population, over consumption and a fiscal lack of proper financial management are the drivers. Simply put we can’t spend our way out of this situation and it is not a normal economic recession. The future of the American Dream is in peril. I believe and make the point in my book, that it will be the local economies that will lead the innovation revolution and create the economic turnaround and catalyst to restart the economic engines of America, Inc.

In my current book, I suggest that locales consider the following as key aspects to determining how to set their course to navigate this perfect storm: First, what is the unique strength of their economy that has the most potential considering the growth industries that will drive this next transitional period? Example Clean energy technologies. How do locales deal with their weaknesses in their business climate? Example what catalyst projects are they undertaking to create positive change and mitigation of shortfalls? Finally in the Art of the Deal Today, locales must drive their position in a focused and specific manner. They must create industry specific investor opportunities and present them with a unique public private partnership that explains the advantage of investing in these locales from the investors perspective. This changes how economic developers must approach due diligence significantly. I discuss this in my book very carefully.

Check out my book at www.wheredidmyjobgo.com to find 50 ideas and more on how to thrive and survive in this global transitional economy.

I will be publishing the third and final book in this economic trilogy in 2010… the last book is named, The Next America… and Inconvenient Economy! I would love to hear from all of you regarding your thoughts on restarting the economic engines of America, Inc. I hope you will check out my books on my official website at www.wheredidmyjobgo.com.

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