SAN JUAN – Invest Puerto Rico’s (InvestPR) board announced Thursday the appointment of Rodrick T. Miller as its CEO, to lead the entity’s mission in attracting new business and investment capital to the island.
Although a nonprofit, the island’s new investment promotion entity is private-sector led, and selected Miller for his experience at economic development agencies in Detroit and in New Orleans. The new CEO, who will be making $200,000 a year and moved with his family to the island, met earlier this week with the governor to talk about InvestPR’s mission and what other jurisdictions are doing.
“The results he delivered in markets similar to Puerto Rico are proof that the right promotion strategies can help drive job growth, innovation and private investment. We’re confident he’ll deliver results for Puerto Rico,” InvestPR Chairman Manuel Laboy said in a statement. During his career, Miller has led such efforts as the attraction of Microsoft Regional Headquarters to Detroit and helped structure transactions that led to developments such as the Outlets at the Riverwalk in New Orleans and the Coyotes Stadium in Phoenix. He was named Young Economic Developer of the Year by the International Economic Development Council and one of the top 50 economic developers in North America by Consultant Connect.
“I have found Puerto Rico to boast amazing potential, boundless energy, a unique culture and a fantastic opportunity to shift its competitive position and create new value. Although competition for investment is fierce, Puerto Rico is in the middle of an economic pivot and the long-term upside is limitless,” said Miller, who speaks Spanish and has been in Puerto Rico numerous times.
InvestPR is taking over the role of attracting foreign investment from the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Co. and the island’s Economic Development Department (DDEC by its Spanish initials) while the agencies focus on expanding and retaining local companies.
Miller said the tasks have to be separated because the private sector is better suited to attracting foreign investment.Among the CEO’s immediate priorities will be to deepen InvestPR’s relationships with its private sector partners, finish the organization’s team-building process and complete and roll out its work agenda. “There’s a sense of urgency that we all share. There’s a great deal of work that has been done already to get InvestPR ready to deliver results. Let’s just do it,” Miller said.
Present during the official announcement of Miller’s appointment were Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce President Kenneth Rivera, Private Sector Coalition Coordinator Francisco Montalvo, Puerto Rico Builders Association President Emilio Colón Zavala, Hecho en Puerto Rico Products Association President Lily Cubano, former Puerto Rico IT Cluster President Christian González, Endeavor Puerto Rico Executive Director Erika Medina, Parallel 18 Executive Director Sebastián Vidal, and Grupo Guayacán Administrator Alejandro Goicoechea, among others.
Source: Caribbean Business