Salem, OR—Governor Kate Brown announced today that Sean Robbins will step down as the director of Business Oregon, the state’s economic development agency.
“I’m grateful to Sean for his leadership and contribution to Business Oregon over the last year,” Governor Brown said. “He crafted a thoughtful vision into an effective strategic action plan for the agency, laying a solid foundation for the next director.”
Under Robbins’ leadership, Business Oregon made an important pivot towards a “Grow Our Own” approach to economic development, emphasizing support for existing Oregon businesses and entrepreneurs over traditional incentive-led recruitment. He reestablished the department’s role as a convener, engaging directly with communities across Oregon and more recently partnering with the export-import industry to identify solutions in light of the service interruptions at the Port of Portland.
Robbins, his wife, and two young sons will be moving back to his home state of Wisconsin this fall to be closer to family. Prior to joining Business Oregon in June 2014, Robbins led Greater Portland Inc as its CEO and served as the Executive Vice President of the Madison Regional Economic Partnership after working for five years in the real estate development industry.
Robbins will serve into fall 2015 while the search for a new director gets underway.