A Quad-City native with two decades of experience in community building has been chosen to lead Renew Moline.
Alexandra Elias, of San Diego, California, has been selected as Renew's new CEO/president, Renew Moline's board of directors announced Friday.
Elias, who will join the organization June 1, will lead the public-private partnership’s development efforts. She also will work with the city of Moline to promote job creation and retention efforts as well as private investment in downtown Moline.
She replaces Janet Mathis, who stepped down May 8 to focus on her business interests, including her Development Consortium.
"After an extensive search, our selection committee felt Alexandra was the right person to continue the more than 29-years of successful partnership between the city and its corporate citizens to develop Moline," said Carrie O'Neill, Renew's chairman and Wells Fargo Bank Quad-Cities market president. "Alex has the background and experience that we need and I am confident that she will lead Renew to the next level."
Elias grew up in the Quad-Cities, where she still has family ties. She is a graduate of Davenport Central and the University of Iowa. She has a master’s degree in city and regional planning from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.
During her 20-year career, she worked in and around government at the federal, state and local levels, including almost nine years with the City of San Diego’s downtown redevelopment agency. She also is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners and Lambda Alpha International, an honorary land economics society.
Her experience includes leading a community planning effort as well as a major public waterfront redevelopment project, both in downtown San Diego. She has received awards for her work in community development, historic preservation and real estate.
"“I’m honored to have been selected for this position, and appreciate the magnitude of the responsibility during a time of significant investment in downtown Moline," Elias said in a news release. "I look forward to pursuing the goals of the board and the city, in partnership with the community."
She takes on the job at a time that development continues to be strong in downtown Moline with two new hotels, new loft housing, the future Q multi-modal station and construction of a new Interstate 74 bridge.
"This is a unique time for downtown and the Quad-Cities region," Elias added. "I hope to build on the great success of Renew to date, and to assist the city in creating new and exciting energy in downtown Moline. This is a community I care deeply and personally about, and I’m thrilled to be back."
Renew Moline is a public-private partnership founded in 1989. Its mission is to create jobs, expand Moline's tax base and expand the vibrancy of Moline's downtown. In partnership with Moline, Renew has helped facilitate more than $350 million in private investment to revitalize the downtown core, including Moline Centre.