For Immediate Release: March 8 2022
The Renfrew County Community Futures Development Corporation (RCCFDC) is sharing the upcoming retirement of Diane McKinnon, the Executive Director, effective April 30 2022. Ms. McKinnon has been the capable and competent lead of the RCCFDC since 2003. According to Ray Bonenberg, the current chair, “Diane has a solid reputation as an outstanding leader within the corporation, the business community and all levels of government. She has overseen the growth of an investment portfolio from 4 million dollars to more than 15 million”.
RCCFDC was formed in 1986, governed by a volunteer board of directors and professional staff to assist small and medium businesses in their efforts to grow economic development in Renfrew County through a variety of business development activities. Over 922 businesses have been loan clients over that time and the corporation has loaned out over 41.7 million dollars throughout Renfrew County. “Diane led the incredible small business relief initiative as a result of Covid – 19 outbreak over the last 2 years” added Bonenberg. “more than 5 million dollars has been distributed in loans to those in need in a quick, non bureaucratic way” he stated.
Throughout her years, Diane has led the corporation through noteworthy Community Economic Development projects such as the Ottawa River Heritage Designation, the Royal Ontario Winter Fair, and funding programs such as the Ontario Self-Employment Benefit Program (OSEB), the Eastern Ontario Development Program (EODP), and the Rural Innovation Initiative Eastern Ontario (RIIEO). During this time, RCCFDC has been a strong supporter of summer students, youth interns, and worked alongside community organizations and partners across Renfrew County in facilitating critical economic development projects with the ultimate goal of strengthening competitiveness, business growth, and innovation within our business community.
RCCFDC has assisted with funding towards impactful projects including the economic feasibility study for the Algonquin College Pembroke Campus that ultimately led to the new campus you see there today. This was possible through the Eastern Ontario Development Program, a funding envelope of approximately 8 million dollars towards eligible projects, with businesses and organizations receiving non repayable cash contributions. The EODP was an instrumental program in providing much needed assistance to businesses and organizations across Renfrew County. In it’s final 5 years, the EODP invested 2.25 million dollars into 42 projects, leveraging more than 5.6 million dollars and impacting more than 630 jobs in Renfrew County.
Following the close of the EODP in March of 2018, RCCFDC facilitated the RIIEO project in Renfrew County, supporting the transition and growth of traditional SMEs, manufacturers, and communities into the new rural economy, driving direct investments by private companies in innovation capital producing aggregate local and regional effects. This project was instrumental in infusing yet another 1.25 million dollars into our Community, leveraging more than 4.84 million and impacting 375 jobs.
“We will miss Diane greatly and wish her the best in a well-deserved retirement” the chair said. The recruitment process to replace her is now underway.
For media inquiries, please contact:
Ray Bonenberg, Chair, Renfrew County Community Futures Development Corporation
613 735 2366