In the 1960s and early 1970s a small group of industrial commissioners from across Alberta met several times per year to discuss their profession and learn about each other's activities.
In 1973 the group compiled a list of individuals to approach, asking them to consider participating in establishment of a formal group of industrial development managers.
The list included representatives from municipal industrial development, chambers of commerce, bank/trust companies, transportation and utility companies, agriculture, consulting, media, advertising, and provincial government.
The first meeting February 15, 1974 was with the founding meeting of a group of 32. Elected Chairman was Alex Metcalfe, Economic Development Manager of Calgary Power Limited. The group's declared purpose: "to promote a liaison between economic developers within Alberta". Their unanimous name choice: "The Economic Developers of Alberta", or EDA.
The first AGM was held in Red Deer that September with 45 registered attendees.
Today EDA is recognized as "Alberta's economic development network". As a professional organization, we are dedicated to offering valuable networking events throughout the year, a range of educational and training programs and a variety of economic information and resources designed to help increase your ability to practice leading edge economic development.
EDA's training, tools, networking and awards are advancing the economic development profession in Alberta.
Our broad and varied membership base includes:municipalities; towns; regions; tourism groups; financial institutions; Crown Corporations; businesses; Regional Economic Development Authorities; Community Futures Development Corporations; federal, provincial, regional and municipal government agencies; students; NGO’s; and other groups and individuals that are either involved or interested in economic development.
We encourage you to join Alberta's economic development network today. Active membership in EDA shows your commitment to personal and professional development; provides you with a range of tools and resources to succeed; and allows you to network with members of the public, non-profit and education sectors; as well as private sector partners, national and international networks. To download our general brochure click here.
In 2024, we will celebrate our 50th anniversary!