In recognition of the importance of locally-led community and economic development in addressing the challenges facing Wisconsin communities, Cooperative Extension Dean and Director Dr. Ayse Somersan created the UW-Extension Center for Community and Economic Development (CCED) and appointed Dr. Ron Shaffer to serve as its Director in 1990.
The appointment of Professor Shaffer, an Extension Community Development Specialist and faculty member in the UW-Madison Department of Agriculture and Applied Economics, was a reflection of the significant impact that the Community Economic Analysis (CEA) program was having on the revitalization of small and medium sized communities across Wisconsin. The Center began with a modest staff of Extension Specialists from UW-Madison’s Departments of Agriculture and Applied Economics, Rural Sociology, and Urban and Regional Planning.
The CCED was formed in part to support the continuation of the CEA Program. It also resulted in a regular newsletter and served as a hub for the development of new ideas and applied research and outreach initiatives to address emerging community and economic development issues and challenges faced by Wisconsin communities. In 1995, staff from the former Tourism Research and Resource Center (previously named the Recreation Resources Center) joined the CCED. Extension’s tourism work dates back to 1969. Specialists in the Center have developed new educational programs and resource related to topics such as regional economic assessment, labor market issues, quality of life, food systems, community marketing, entrepreneurship, and downtown business development.
Faculty and staff that have served or are currently serving in the CCED include: Ron Shaffer, Gerry Campbell, Harriot Moyer, Bill Ryan, Dave Marcouiller, Rachel Lohr, Steve Deller, Jerry Hembd, N. R. Sumathi, Bill Pinkovitz, Al Anderson, Matt Kures, Andy Lewis, Gary Green, Greg Wise, Chuck Law, Randy Stoecker, Laura Brown, Erin Peot, Kristin Runge, and Tessa Conroy.
Past and Present CCED Directors: