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The balloons are back!

Chris Lloyd

Chris Lloyd leads the McGuireWoods Consulting infrastructure and economic development team where he specializes in site selection and economic development incentives negotiations. Since 1998, Chris has worked on dozens of high profile, corporate expansions and relocations across the country. Chris has also worked closely with clients on numerous public-private partnership projects for transportation and other infrastructure, and played a leading role in the development and passage of Virginia’s public-private partnership laws, which have since become model legislation for use in other states.

Prior to joining McGuireWoods Consulting, Chris served for nearly five years in the Office of the Secretary of Commerce and Trade under Virginia Governors Allen and Wilder. In this position, he was responsible for legislative, budgetary, and regulatory coordination and development within that Secretariat which managed the state’s economic development programs.

Chris graduated from the College of William & Mary in 1993. He lives in Richmond with his wife, Megan, and children, Ryan and Meredith.

Linda Burns

Linda Burns is WDGC’s incentives practice leader. She has close to 30 years experience. Linda participates on WDGC consulting projects, supplying incentives input in increasingly greater detail as the consulting engagement progresses. Linda has negotiated incentives packages for WDGC clients throughout the U.S. Additionally, when requested by our clients, Linda can lead the team in final site negotiation/acquisition. Linda is active in several industry trade associations including IAMC and CoreNet Global. Linda earned her Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral Candidacy from Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

Alison Benton

Alison Benton, CEcD, is the President of Aliquantus Consulting, specializing in negotiating incentives, having more than twenty years in the economic development field. Her practice focuses on site selection and negotiating customized incentive solutions, including federal and state training grants and solving issues related to real estate expansions/relocations. A sampling of clients include HCA, Shell Oil, IBM, Citigroup, Target, American Airlines, ExpressJet, Hilton, Sprint, and American Greetings. Prior to starting her own firm, Ms. Benton was a Principal at UHY Advisors, and a Director with RSM McGladrey. She was a Senior Manager at Deloitte Tax, Vice President of Government Partnerships for Strategic Partnerships, and Director of Economic Development for the West Central Texas Council of Governments and the Town of Flower Mound, Texas. Ms. Benton has served on the board of Keep Texas Beautiful and the Greater Keller Chamber of Commerce, and as board chair for the Keller Economic Development Board and Abilene Clean & Proud. She is a longtime member of the Texas Economic Development Council and the International Economic Development Council. She received her undergraduate degree in Communication from Arizona State University and completed graduate level work at the Economic Development Institute program at the University of Oklahoma. Ms. Benton is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) and a frequent lecturer regarding creative incentive opportunities that work positively for both the business and the government.

Don Burns

Don Burns, Principal, Burns Development group

Over 40 years experience in planning, industrial and architectural design, and commercial and municipal construction management. Extensive experience with unique environments, including cultural and recreational facilities, riverfront and harbor developments, state and national parks, aquariums, zoos, science centers, historic sites and museums, and commercial interpretive exhibitions. Don is a project manager for the City of Dallas Trinity River Corridor’s Audubon Center, Texas Horse Park, and Trinity Overlook projects; the Dallas Zoo, and the Dallas Aquarium. Other work has included: Lear-Siegler, NASA Johnson Space Center, United Technologies, Bass Family, Craig & Kathryn Hall, General Electric, Smithsonian Institute Air and Space Museum, The Franklin Institute Science Museum, Chicago Museum of Science & Industry, National Aquarium (Baltimore), New England Aquarium (Boston), National Park Service Acadian Cultural Centers (Louisiana), Boston Museum of Science, Franklin Park Zoo, The Science Place (Dallas), Museum of African-American Life & Culture (Dallas), and The Museum of Science and Discovery (Fort Lauderdale).

Brian Corde

Brian Corde, Managing Partner, Atlas Insight, has conducted successful negotiations for some of the world’s largest corporations such as: Wells Fargo, Allstate Insurance, Pfizer, Philip Morris USA, Kraft, Yahoo!, The Hartford, HSBC, The Triumph Group, Merrill Lynch, GKN Aerospace, BOC Gases, Carlisle Company, The Marmon Group and Kohler Company. Brian performs lead negotiations for some of Atlas Insight’s largest economic development projects. He has been working in the site selection and incentive negotiation business for 21 years and is widely considered an industry expert. He is a reliable opinion source for trade publications and AP stories.

Before co-founding Atlas Insight, Brian was a Regional Practice Leader for BDO Seidman. Prior to BDO, he was a former partner in the site location division and discretionary incentive division of Mintax, which was acquired by ADP in 2006. Brian was invited by the Governor of Louisiana to Washington DC after Hurricane Katrina to help develop a plan of action in rebuilding the areas of the state that were damaged. He has been a frequent guest of state governments including Georgia, Oregon, Washington and others to assist with development of strategic plans to attract business investment.

Brian holds a degree in Economics, with concentrations in Accounting and Finance, from Rutgers University, has obtained his IAMC Fellowship designation, is an avid softball player, and is married with three daughters.