Spire provides support for Auburn’s Government and Economic Development Institute

Published: July 24, 2018
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Industry partnerships fuel the work of Auburn University’s Government and Economic Development Institute (GEDI) to train tomorrow’s government and economic leaders. A recent multi-year commitment from Spire will ensure the institute meets economic development needs of leaders, communities and organizations throughout Alabama for years to come.

Spire’s partnership will bolster Auburn’s commitment to advancing Alabama communities through the Intensive Economic Development Course. Week one of the annual two-week course was July 9-13 in Auburn and introduced participants to all phases of economic development, utilizing program leaders and faculty who are the field’s most effective practitioners with proven success in economic development practices and techniques. Week two of the course will be Sept. 10-13 in Auburn.

“Serving communities means giving back to the people who lead our neighborhoods, cities and state of Alabama so each of us can make a difference,” said Nick Popielski, Spire vice president of business and economic development. “We are proud to support Auburn University and the Government Economic Development Institute and look forward to working together to promote increased economic development and improved quality of life throughout Alabama.”

Spire has supported an array of programs and initiatives at Auburn University in the past and has made significant investments to advance the communities it serves throughout the nation.

“Partnering with corporations such as Spire significantly advances Auburn University’s land-grant mission of outreach and service,” said Jane DiFolco Parker, vice president for development and president of the Auburn University Foundation. “We are very grateful for Spire’s generous gift and appreciate the opportunity to work collaboratively with them to serve Alabama communities through robust economic development instruction, research and outreach programs.”

Through training courses and other resources, GEDI promotes effective government policy and management, civic engagement, economic prosperity and better lives for Alabama residents. The institute’s programs provide support for economic development professionals, elected officials, community leaders, utility company representatives, community and regional planners, chamber of commerce officials and other stakeholders. With more than 30 years of experience, GEDI is the state’s leading provider of economic development education and training.

“Spire’s support will ensure that the Auburn University Intensive Economic Development Training Course is the nation’s best,” said Joe Sumners, executive director of GEDI. “We appreciate their continuing commitment to the economic success of Alabama’s communities.”

About Spire

At Spire Inc. (NYSE: SR) we believe energy exists to help make people's lives better. It's a simple idea, but one that's at the heart of our company. Every day we serve 1.7 million homes and businesses making us the fifth largest publicly traded natural gas company in the country. We help families and business owners fuel their daily lives through our gas utilities serving Alabama, Mississippi and Missouri. Our non-utility operations include Spire Marketing, which provides natural gas marketing and related services. We are committed to transforming our business and pursuing growth through 1) growing organically, 2) investing in infrastructure, 3) acquiring and integrating, and 4) innovation and technology. Learn more at SpireEnergy.com.

Auburn University is a nationally ranked land grant institution recognized for its commitment to world-class scholarship, interdisciplinary research and an undergraduate education experience second to none. Auburn is home to more than 29,000 students, and its faculty and research partners collaborate to develop and deliver meaningful scholarship, science and technology-based advancements that meet pressing regional, national and global needs. Auburn's commitment to active student engagement, professional success and public/private partnership drives a growing reputation for outreach and extension that delivers broad economic, health and societal impact. Auburn's mission to educate, discover and collaborate drives its expanding impact on the world.