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Greater Memphis Chamber chooses proven job creator as its next chief economic development officer

Gwyn Fisher worked closely with the Chamber on the BlueOval City project, and has worked to add more than 23,000 jobs to the region.
Credit: Greater Memphis Chamber

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Greater Memphis Chamber announced its next chief economic development officer Thursday, choosing Memphian Gwyn Fisher for the role.

The Chamber describes Fisher as a Memphian who has played a pivotal role in attracting jobs and investment to Greater Memphis for nearly a decade.

Fisher will assume the role officially on December 14.

Fisher, who has served as Greater Memphis regional director for the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development since April 2013, will succeed chief economic development officer Ted Townsend, who transitions to his new role as president & CEO on Dec. 13. 

In her new role, Fisher will lead the work to recruit and retain businesses, jobs, and investment to Greater Memphis for the Chamber, which is the region’s primary economic development organization (EDO). 

“We are thrilled to welcome Gwyn Fisher to the Greater Memphis Chamber,” said Ted Townsend, incoming president & CEO of the Chamber. “I’ve worked closely with Gwyn for years, so I know from personal experience how tough and tenacious she can be when it comes to scoring major wins for our region. I have every confidence that Gwyn will lead our team and our region to greater heights.” 

The addition of Fisher comes at an exciting time for Greater Memphis, which had its best year ever for economic development in 2021, with more than 9,300 new jobs announced. A signature project – and one that Fisher worked on closely with the Chamber team – was Ford’s BlueOval City electric vehicle manufacturing campus, the single largest private investment in Tennessee history and in Ford’s history.  

The campus near Memphis begins production in 2025 and is expected to result in 6,000 direct jobs, not counting the thousands of additional jobs Ford’s suppliers are expected to bring to the region. 

In June, the Chamber outlined its Prosper Memphis 2030 plan to grow Memphis by 2030 which includes plans to add more than 50,000 jobs by that year. The Chamber said their economic development work, headed by Fisher, will play an important role in helping the region meet those goals. 

During her tenure at ECD, Gwyn and her team have worked with more than 150 companies to create more than 23,600 new jobs and invest more than $7 billion in the region. 

Prior to joining the state, Fisher was the founder and CEO of Revolution Strategy (2011-2013), helping government and community leaders form public-private partnerships, while also working for FedEx Express (2012-2013). Fisher previously served as the executive director of MPACT Memphis (2008-2011), which she built into one of the nation’s largest independent organizations for young professionals.

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