LVEDC Hires Research Director With Extensive Experience at PPL, Talen Energy
By Colin McEvoy on March 10, 2017
A seasoned professional with three decades of strategic planning and corporate communications experience at PPL Corp. and Talen Energy will now lead the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) research department.
George Lewis has been hired as LVEDC Director of Research and Analysis, where he will conduct original research to improve stakeholders’ understanding of the Lehigh Valley economy and improve the organization’s ability to market the economic assets of the region.
“After a 30-year career with a local company that was deeply committed to community and economic development, as I looked for my next career opportunity I really wanted to find a way to give back to the region, and this position and organization was an excellent fit,” Lewis said.
Lewis worked in the PPL communications department from 1987 to 2015, starting as a communication specialist and ultimately rising the position of Director of Corporate Communications, a position he held for three years.
He then became the first Director of Corporate Communications for the PPL spin-off Talen Energy, where he established and developed the company’s corporate communications organization and built entirely new communication procedures, policies, and programs.
LVEDC President and CEO Don Cunningham said research and data analysis is one of the most important functions at LVEDC, and that Lewis will be crucial in developing in-depth market intelligence and recognizing emerging economic trends.
“It’s very critical for a region to know thyself and build strategic plans based on facts, data, and information,” Cunningham said. “George’s extensive work experience and long history in the Lehigh Valley will allow him to provide relevant data and insightful perspectives to inform our economic development efforts.”
The role of LVEDC Director of Research and Analysis involves tracking economic data, preparing regular research reports, conducting regular surveys of investor companies, responding to requests for information from outside sources, research collaborations with external partners, and collaborating regularly with LVEDC’s communications and marketing divisions.
Lewis previously led transition communications for PPL during the Talen spinoff, served as crisis communications coordinator for emergency events at both companies, and served as a public information manager for PPL’s Susquehanna nuclear plant.
He directed communications for all major business lines at PPL, including PPL Electric Utilities, PPL EnergyPlus, PPL Global, PPL Energy Services, and Nuclear, Fossil & Hydro Generation. He held the position of Senior Manager of Corporate and Supply Communications before rising to the Director position.
Lewis has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Penn State University, from which he graduated with highest honors in 1981, and worked as a reporter and editor with The Express newspaper in Lock Haven, Pa., for nearly six years before joining PPL in 1987.
LVEDC is also currently seeking a Director of Talent Supply, a new position that will be grant-funded for a period of two years. The position will assist LVEDC’s staff and stakeholders to better understand the region’s labor market dynamics in establishing, conducting, and analyzing results from Lehigh Valley employers.
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