Vice President of Development, Southeast Office
Richard serves as the Vice President of Development for the Southeast Region. His focus is providing both development and acquisition solutions on the industrial real estate front for both companies and communities.
He is committed to being collaborative and adaptive with market demands while simultaneously being a fiduciary to the clients’ and partners’ needs. Richard cultivated his strong business acumen throughout his more than 20 years of experience in both local and regional economic development, investor relations, real estate development and public policy.
In 2022, Richard was appointed by South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster as the District 3 representative on the South Carolina Jobs-Economic Development Authority Board. He has earned recognition for his economic development work by being named one of North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers by Consultant Connect and named the “local/regional economic development director of the year” by the Upstate South Carolina Alliance. He earned a “Master Practitioner” (EcDMP) designation as a member of the inaugural class of the Advanced Economic Development Leadership (AEDL) program. Blackwell is also a “South Carolina Certified Economic Developer” (SCCED) through certification through the SC dept. of Commerce and the South Carolina Economic Developers’ Association.
Blackwell believes “jobs change family trees” and welcomes the challenge of working with clients to find success that creates economic ripple effects.
University of South Carolina, M.A. in Public Administration
University of South Carolina, B.A. in Political Science
Duke University, Certificate in Non-Profit Management
Clemson University, Certificate in Leadership
University of Oklahoma, Graduate of the Economic Development Institute
MEMBERSHIPS & AFFILIATIONS
NAIOP • SIOR • CCIM • IAMC • GA Economic Developers Association • VA Economic Developers Association • Southern Economic Development Council, Member of the Board of Directors since 2020 • SC Economic Developers Association, Member of the Board of Directors since 2014 & Two-Time President