The Ontario East Economic Development Commission works in tandem with city, township and county level Economic Development offices to ensure all of your questions are answered.
Contact us today to discover how Ontario East could be the perfect fit for your business.
Lucy Medeiros, Project Administrator
Ontario East Office, Kingston: 613-634-8569
Jay Amer, Ec. D., Executive Director
Ontario East Office, Peterborough: 613-634-8569
Alysha Dominico, OE-TISP Project Co-ordinator
Julie Savard, WEP Program Co-ordinator
Jody Burns, Financial Manager
Message from the President
On behalf of the Board of Directors, welcome to Ontario East.
The Ontario East Economic Development Commission is the lead regional economic development organization facilitating collaboration, working with investors, supporting members, providing resources and working as a collective voice for economic development in Eastern Ontario.
Now, more than ever, it is essential to support our member communities through regional recovery and investment promotion programming and raise awareness of the unique opportunities available in Ontario East.
If you are an investor or a business seeking information on how to enter our proven business locations throughout our region, Ontario East is your one-stop connection with local economic development professionals ready to assist with the latest information and informed advice.
Our 150+ members and partners work together to bring economic development, growth and prosperity to Eastern Ontario. If you are a member, be sure and connect with us through the website, social media and at our regular meetings (virtual and soon, in person). If you are not a member, email us at email@example.com or give us a call at 613-634-8569 to learn about our successful track record and the benefits of collaboration through regional economic development with Ontario East.
Please subscribe to our newsletter and connect with us through social media for the latest news.
- Stephen Paul
Board of Directors
Stephen Paul, President
County of Lennox and Addington
Stephen is the Director, Community and Development Services for Lennox and Addington County. His portfolio includes Economic Development, Tourism, Planning, Public Libraries and Museums.
Prior to returning home to Lennox and Addington, Stephen worked for the City of Toronto Tourism Department as a producer of large scale events and festivals.
He is a Past President of the Great Waterway Regional Tourism Organization and the Ontario East Economic Development Commission.
Stephen is an active member of the community. He is the President of Softball Napanee and has been the Chair of numerous national sporting events that have been hosted in Lennox and Addington.
Stephen is a graduate of Queen’s University.
T.J. Flynn, Vice President & Treasurer
T.J. is currently the Investment Attraction Officer for Northumberland County and serves as the Ontario East Economic Development Council Treasurer. Prior to these roles, he served in a volunteer capacity for several Economic Development projects, including, the Cobourg Downtown Vitalization Committee, the Cobourg Economic Advisory Committee and the Business & Entrepreneurship Northumberland Faster Forward Coaching program. Before becoming involved in economic development in eastern Ontario, T.J. worked for 30 years in the private sector, his last position as Sr. Vice President, Sales at Transcontinental Media.
T.J. holds a B.A from the University of Toronto and an M.A. in Eighteenth Century English Literature from Queen’s University. He has also completed the Queen’s University Executive Program courses in Financial Management.
In addition to his volunteer role with Ontario East Economic Development Council, T.J. volunteers as Board Member and Finance Committee member of Northumberland County Habitat for Humanity.
Chris King, Ec. D., Past President
Quinte Economic Development Commission
With over 25 years’ experience as an Ontario East member, Chris serves as Chief Executive Officer of the Quinte Economic Development Commission (QEDC) where he oversees investment attraction and retention activities for this regional economic development organization that represents the City of Belleville, The City of Quinte West (Trenton) and the Municipality of Brighton.
Chris is a Certified Economic Developer (Ec.D.) and has been recognized for his success in attracting many new employers to the Bay of Quinte region in various industry sectors. He has earned several awards at the regional, provincial, and international levels for his work with QEDC.
Chris is active on a number of boards and committees and has lead a number of initiatives including: workforce development, investment missions to international locations, and Ontario East team leader food and advanced manufacturing sector, He is a past chair of the Ontario Food Cluster, former board member of Launch Lab and Trenval Community Development Corporation. He is currently past President of the Trenton Rotary Club and a Paul Harris Fellow.
Jay Amer, Ec. D., Executive Director & Board Secretary
Ontario East Economic Development Commission
Jay's economic development experience includes twelve years as a senior executive with Peterborough's economic development agency and since 2010, operation of his own professional consultancy, Amer & Associates Economic Development. He has delivered a successful portfolio of work that includes economic development strategic plans, economic research and analysis for investment attraction and trade, marketing communications, government relations and funding programs, as well as organizational development and governance. Prior to discovering his passion for economic development, Jay served in a variety of technical and communications management roles with Ontario Power Generation, and he has also volunteered on numerous non-profit boards. He is a past President of the Economic Developers Association of Canada (EDAC), has been a member of Ontario East since 2000 and is Ontario East’s representative on the Eastern Ontario Leadership Council (EOLC).
Abdul Razak Jendi, Director
Kingston Economic Development
Abdul Razak is a seasoned international economic developer with over a decade of expertise in international trade and FDI in North America, Europe & Asia. He currently holds the position of Investment Manager for sustainable manufacturing at Kingston Economic Development in which he oversees programs to support companies to grow and expand.
Before joining the Kingston Economic Development team, Abdul Razak held the position of Economic Development Manager at a Montreal-based consulting firm, playing a pivotal role in managing and delivering lead generation programs, in-market representation, and industry analysis for domestic and international clients in Canada, the USA, and Europe.
Originally from Syria, Abdul Razak was brought up in the United Arab Emirates, he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Finance with a minor in Economics from the American University of Sharjah and is currently completing his Master’s in Economics at Concordia University.
Kelley Lemenchick, Director
Renfrew County CFDC
Kelley Lemenchick, Community Development Officer at the Renfrew County Community Futures Development Corporation has successfully administered programs including the Eastern Ontario Development Program and Rural Innovation Initiative Eastern Ontario and coordinated Community Economic Development activities/initiatives in Renfrew County over the course of the last nine years.
Kelley graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from Carleton University, received her Small Business Counsellors Certification from Acadia University, and she is an EDAC member currently working towards her Ec.D Designation.
Bob Peters, Director
City of Cornwall
Bob Peters is the Manager of Economic Development for the City of Cornwall.
He is responsible for overseeing the Economic Development efforts for Cornwall, which includes investment attraction, business retention and expansion, tourism, community improvement programs, resident attraction. This includes marketing the City to prospective commercial investors and new residents via a variety of marketing tactics, including the ChooseCornwall.ca website.
Mr. Peters is an active member of the Ontario East Economic Development Commission, helping to promote Eastern Ontario as a good region to invest in. In addition to his current role on the Board, he has previously held the roles of President, Marketing Director and Logistics Chair with Ontario East.
Prior to rejoining the City in 2007, Mr. Peters ran WEBtech, a web design company located in Cornwall, Ontario. Mr. Peters has given seminars and workshops to a variety of groups, typically on marketing topics. He has also served as a guest lecturer at St. Lawrence College.
Bonnie Ruddock, Director
Region 9 Regional Tourism Organization
Bonnie Ruddock is the Executive Director for Region 9 Regional Tourism Organization (RTO9), she has been with the organization since their inception in 2011. Bonnie was appointed to Executive Director’s position in 2017 after 6 years as Operations Manager for RTO9. With a background in finance and a passion for the tourism industry, Bonnie is a true leader. Prior to her career with RTO9, Bonnie was Executive Director for the 1000 Islands Gananoque Chamber of Commerce for 10 years, where she was instrumental in growing membership and launching the first official Bi-lingual Visitors Guide for the destination. Bonnie serves on various committees within South Eastern Ontario and is also a Board member of Festivals and Events Ontario.
The Ontario East Board of Directors also includes Non-Voting Members who are senior regional officials from the following government organizations:
- Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation & Trade - MEDJCT (Provincial)
- Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs - OMAFRA (Provincial)
- Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development - MLITSD (Provincial)
- Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada - Rural Economic Development (Federal)
Our Economic Development Partners
EASTERN ONTARIO WARDENS' & EASTERN ONTARIO MAYORS' CAUCUS
Ontario East Economic Development Commission works closely with the Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus (EOWC) and the Eastern Ontario Mayors’ Caucus (EOMC) through the Eastern Ontario Leadership Council.
The EOWC includes all counties and lower-tier municipalities across eastern Ontario and are focused on advocating for and improving infrastructure and connectivity, growing the regional economy, and reducing municipalities' operational costs. http://www.eowc.org/
The EOMC includes all mayors representing the separated cities in eastern Ontario from Peterborough in the west to Cornwall in the east and Pembroke to the North. EOMC works to advance municipal priorities important to Eastern Ontario. The EOMC advocate for advancing issues of importance to eastern Ontario's cities. https://eomc.ca/
EASTERN ONTARIO LEADERSHIP COUNCIL
The EOLC consists of five major partners that together represent the various sectors across the region. The partnership was launched to tackle issues regarding the economic performance of the region and pursue opportunities to maintain and enhance its economic prosperity. The five partners are:
Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus, Eastern Ontario Mayors’ Caucus, Eastern Ontario Regional Network, Ontario East Economic Development Commission and Community Futures Eastern Ontario. http://www.eolc.info/
RURAL ONTARIO INSTITUTE
The Rural Ontario Institute (ROI) is a non-profit, charitable organization that develops leaders, initiates dialogue, supports collaboration and promotes action on issues and opportunities facing rural Ontario.
The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs is committed to success of Ontario's rural communities and its food and agriculture sectors. Ontario East and its members work closely with this Ministry to deliver information and programming in support of our mostly rural region. http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/
The Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade supports a strong, innovative economy that can provide jobs, opportunities, and prosperity for all Ontarians. Ontario East works with industry specialists to support key employment sectors in the region and with the Ministry's investment attraction agency Invest Ontario.
The Ministry of Labour, Training & Skills Development provides a variety of workforce related services including supporting apprenticeships, the skilled trades, industry training and employment services in Ontario. Ontario East delivers a workforce development program supported by the Ministry to ensure that the region continues to offer a skilled, available, and dedicated workforce to existing and new employers.
COMMUNITY FUTURES EASTERN ONTARIO
Ontario East Economic Development Commission partners with a network of fourteen participating Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDCs) in eastern Ontario through Community Futures Eastern Ontario. The Community Futures Program (CFP) is a community driven economic development initiative designed to assist rural areas.
CFDCs are funded through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.
The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario delivers programs and services to support innovation and economic growth in southern Ontario—Canada’s most populous region. Ontario East partners with FedDev Ontario to promote investment attraction and areas of emphasis including supporting women entrepreneurship in the region.
INVEST IN CANADA
Invest in Canada works directly with global investors to unlock investment opportunities and facilitate expansion in Canada. We bring industry, community, and government partners together to offer seamless services that make it easy for you to grow your operations in Canada. Ontario East participates in programming and trade missions in support of Invest in Canada's mandate.
AGRICULTURE & AGRI-FOOD CANADA
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada supports the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector through initiatives that promote innovation and competitiveness. Ontario East works with this ministry to support its key employment sectors - food & beverage.