Director of Economic Development

Tracey Nichols joined the City of Cleveland in February 2008 after serving seventeen years at Cuyahoga County, where she was the Assistant Director of Economic Development for her last four years.

Since joining the City, Nichols has led her team to complete over 560 projects that will create over 11,800 new jobs and retain over 8,000 jobs. Her efforts have resulted in $146.8 million in new grants or pass-through loan funding. Her team has been recognized for innovative projects both locally and nationally with awards from Inside Business, Housing and Urban Development, International Economic Development Council and the Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer. She has been invited to speak at national conferences including the Clinton Global Initiative, National League of Cities, National Brownfields Conference, International Economic Development Council and the Initiative for Competitive Inner Cities Conference.

Nichols is well known for creating new, innovative programs, such as the Vacant Property Initiative, which has resulted in over 2.6 million square feet of space in vacant buildings and 85 acres of vacant land being returned to productive use, creating and retaining over 5,900 jobs.

Nichols has a degree in Business Management, concentrating in Accounting and Finance, from Case Western Reserve University and has the National Development Council’s certification as an Economic Development Finance Professional. In 2010, she was presented with the Cleveland Foundation’s Homer Wadsworth Awardfor excellence in public service. As a member of Mayor Frank Jackson’s cabinet, she continues to work on the City’s cluster based and place based economic development strategies to bring new investment and jobs to the City of Cleveland.