Head of Denver’s Office of Economic Development to leave for real estate firm

Paul Washington, executive director of Denver’s Office of Economic Development, , is joining the real estate firm JLL.

staff photo

Denver’s going to need a new director of economic development.

The man currently in charge of the office responsible for supporting businesses in the city and attracting new companies to the area, Paul Washington, is joining the global real estate firm JLL, the company and the city announced Monday.

Washington will be JLL’s market director for the Rocky Mountain region.

Mayor Michael Hancock appointed him as executive director of the Denver Office of Economic Development in 2011.

Outgoing executive director of the Denver Office of Economic Development, Paul Washington. (Courtesy photo)

Outgoing executive director of the Denver Office of Economic Development, Paul Washington. (Courtesy photo)

“Without a doubt, Paul is the most effective economic development chief this city has seen and because of his clear vision and tenacity, Denver today offers our people a stable economy and a broad-range of jobs and opportunity,” Hancock said in a statement Monday. “He has helped set Denver on a successful path and I cannot think of a better, more well-deserved next step for him than to work for the JLL team.”

Washington led a 105-person team focused on job creation, business assistance, housing options, neighborhood redevelopment and workforce training. During his tenure, more than 30,000 jobs were created and retained and more than $818 million was gained in private capital investment, according to JLL.

Washinton said he sees his new role with JLL as an extension of his work for the city.

“JLL has a long history of helping Denver-area businesses create value and be more efficient through real estate acquisition and management,” he said in a statement. “I look forward to working with the team here to fulfill that mission and continue to execute on growth strategies across our business lines.”

In his new role, Washington will oversee day-to-day operations for the region, including managing a team of more than 265 professionals.

Washington’s final day with the city will be March 24. A recruitment search is underway to name his successor, and during the interim period OED chief operating officer Amy Edinger will serve as acting executive director, according to the city.

Executive directors with the city and county of Denver earn between $100,510 and $160,816, according to the city. Washington’s exact pay wasn’t immediately available.

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