Job-attraction agency raises $4.6M

The nonprofit Northern Kentucky Tri-County Economic Development Corp. (Tri-ED) exceeded its five-year investor campaign, bringing in $4.6 million – $100,000 more than its goal.

The campaign, called Build + Elevate NKY,” attracted investments by 60 business and community leaders in the organization that is the primary economic development agency for Boone, Kenton and Campbell counties in Northern Kentucky. Tri-ED provides marketing, and business retention and expansion services for the region. 

Members of the Tri-ED board

“The Tri-ED board of directors is committed to achieving the goals of the Build + Elevate NKY initiatives and this new path for the company as a private/public partnership,” said Tom Banta, chair of the Tri-ED board and Chief Real Estate Officer at Corporex Companies. “We’re grateful to the business community in the Cincinnati region for investing in Build + Elevate NKY. The campaign funds the company’s work on the four initiatives that were created with private and public sector input.”

The Tri-ED team began working on the four key initiatives funded in July:

  • Data-informed community decision-making
  • Activate the Northern Kentucky Port Authority
  • Deliver customized workforce solutions
  • Targeted business growth

Co-chairs Tom Banta and Bob Heil, CEO of KLH Engineers, led an eight-person honorary campaign cabinet with private and public sector leaders who assisted Tri-ED and its board of directors in investor outreach, which led to successfully exceeding the $4.5 million goal.

The Tri-ED team has grown and will continue to expand to achieve the goals of the four initiatives over the next five years. In August, Lauren Mulcahy joined Tri-ED as client relations specialist, and Sydney Murray as communications specialist.

Both Mulcahy and Murray entered newly created roles within the growing company. They will support the Tri-ED team’s overall goals, including the initiatives of Build + Elevate NKY. Jacob Edmonds was named Business Growth Manager to lead the targeted business growth initiative.

Tri-ED is currently hiring for two additional new positions: Workforce Development Manager and Real Estate and Project Specialist.

The Workforce Development Manager will be responsible for leading the Build + Elevate NKY workforce solutions initiative. This position will work to determine the root causes of Northern Kentucky’s workforce challenges, engage existing tradable sector employers in ascertaining current workforce needs and gaps, and identify workforce trends to prepare for future business growth.

The Real Estate and Project Specialist will perform real estate-related special projects, as well as assist with activation of the Northern Kentucky Port Authority and evaluation of sites and buildings for commercial development or redevelopment. 

More information about these positions, as well as an opening to fill the Research Manager role, can be found at

Tri-ED is on pace to exceed its 2022 targets for projects, jobs and capital investment, building on its accomplishments each of the past two years. The company exceeded its 2021 and 2020 targets. In 2021, Tri-ED supported 27 companies with expansions or new location announcements with 1,851 jobs and $255M in capital investment in Boone, Campbell, and Kenton counties.

Since its founding in 1987, Northern Kentucky Tri-ED has led the successful relocation or expansion efforts for 746 business projects, representing more than 71,800 primary industry jobs created with a capital investment of more than $9 billion.

To learn more about Build + Elevate NKY, visit

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