The Rockingham County Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism
“The Rockingham County Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism is the lead organization unifying the community to foster a business climate that creates jobs and opportunities for citizens leading to investment in our county.”
“To provide the best quality of life educationally, economically, and environmentally.”
Meet Our Team
(Shawn Gorman, Kerry Taylor-Pinnix, Betsy Brame, Jan Critz, Lance Metzler, Jamie Rorrer, Robin Yount and Ken Allen.)
Jan Critz, director of the Rockingham County Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism
Jan Critz took the helm of the Rockingham County Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism in October 2014. Jan plans, organizes and implements the economic development program to promote the growth and development of the County’s economic and tourism base; assists in the retention and expansion of existing businesses; and vigorously seeks out new businesses for the County. Jan’s career in economic development includes serving as economic developer/existing industry specialist with the North Carolina Department of Commerce’s Business and Industry Division and vice president of the Surry County Economic Development Partnership, Inc. in Dobson, NC. She completed her undergraduate work at Surry Community College and Gardner-Webb University and also earned her MBA from Gardner-Webb University. She is a graduate of the Economic Development Institute and member of the North Carolina Economic Developers Association (NCEDA) and the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).
Shawn Gorman, deputy director/small business manager
Shawn has over 30 years in the textile, plastics and chemicals industries; he is experienced in manufacturing, sales and marketing, strategic planning and quality management. For the past 12 years he has operated businesses and counseled business owners. His role with the Rockingham County Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism includes business counseling, assisting entrepreneurs and small businesses, as well as working with existing industries.
Ken Allen, manager, business & economic development
Ken joined the Rockingham County Economic Development team in early 2015. As Manager of Business & Economic Development, he is responsible for implementing a visitation program to industries and businesses throughout Rockingham County. He assists with retention and expansion projects as well as provides assistance on issues and challenges faced by the local industrial base. Ken has over 30 years of experience in Economic Development and was previously regional manager/economic developer for the southeast region of NC with the state Department of Commerce’s Business and Industry Division. During his tenure with NC Commerce, he recruited over 3,000 new jobs and more than $1.5 billion investment in southeastern NC. He also worked for the NC Department of Agriculture and Progress Energy. Ken received his B.S. in Business Administration/Marketing from the University of South Carolina. His professional associations include the North Carolina Economic Developers Association and the International Economic Development Council.
Robin Yount, tourism manager
Robin has been leading Rockingham County’s tourism initiative since 1999. Since that time she has re-directed the county-wide tourism marketing effort to focus on outdoor recreation, including an emphasis on river recreation and the establishment of public river access across the county. A native of Rockingham County, Robin is responsible for implementing all the initiatives and marketing efforts of the Tourism Development Authority as well as promoting the county’s quality of life in order to attract new business and visitors.
Kerry Taylor-Pinnix, project management specialist
Kerry is responsible for maintaining all the databases and information related to new business recruitment and industry expansions for the Rockingham County Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism. A native and lifelong resident of Rockingham County, Kerry is also responsible for the production of many of the Center’s materials and publications. She joined the Rockingham County staff in 1993 and throughout her years here, Kerry has worked on hundreds of new business or expansion projects.
Jamie Rorrer, public relations & marketing consultant
Jamie grew up in Eden in Rockingham County and has worked with Rockingham County Economic Development and the Tourism Development Authority since 2002. She is responsible for all the public relations and marketing activities for the Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism. She received her B.A. in Communication from Salem College.
Betsy Brame, administrative assistant
Betsy joined the Center for Economic Development, Small Business and Tourism team as Administrative Assistant in 2015. She is responsible for a wide range of administrative functions that support the management and operations of the office. A native of Rockingham County, she has office management experience in the construction, health care and public health sectors.