“I think we have great opportunities,” Roberts said. “I think it’s a great time.”
A native of Birmingham, Roberts has lived in Odenville for nearly 11 years. With a law degree from the University of Alabama and a background in small business and commercial real estate, he joined the EDC in May as project manager.
Roberts, 44, said included in his responsibilities “could be various types of projects, from working with companies that are planning to expand or come here, to gathering information on real estate, general economic development activities.
“And anything else that is required,” he said.
Partly because of the efforts of the EDC, the county has withstood the recent troubled economic times, mostly unscathed, and seen a number of new businesses either relocate to the county, or existing businesses expanding their operations.
“The EDC has done a fantastic job,” Roberts said. “Their five-year plan that was just recently completed was an overwhelming, smashing success — they exceeded their goals in every conceivable way. The people here are fantastic. They’ve all done a fantastic job.
“I just hope to fit in and use my perspective and experience to enhance and further promote and achieve continued success and growth for St. Clair County.”
The county’s greatest assets, he said, are its leaders and its esprit de corps.
“Everyone seems to work together, as opposed to letting their own ‘neighborhood view’ obstruct the overall growth,” he said. “I guess that starts with the St. Clair County Commission, Chairman (Stan) Batemon, and all of them, and then down to the next level, the mayors of the various cities, seem to work together when necessary, and are always encouraging, or pulling for success of other mayors.
“For example, at the Nufab Rebar groundbreaking on June 22 — that’s Riverside’s event, so to speak, but in addition to Mayor (Rusty) Jessup, you had other mayors and officials from Pell City and Argo attending, just to show support. I think that’s important, and it all starts with proper leadership. That is a strong point for St. Clair County.”
Roberts said the opportunity for growth extends through the region, the state and the entire Southeast.
“You can look at this on several levels,” he said. “Everybody looks at their own neighborhood, and we have great potential and opportunities here; then you look at it on the next level, which you’d call the Birmingham region — again, great opportunities and potential; then at the state level; and if you wanted to go further, the Southeast in general, we’ve got tremendous advantages.
“Because of that, I see no limit as to what can be accomplished.”
Contact Will Heath at firstname.lastname@example.org.