Go Utah’s Center for Rural Development Embraces New Service Model

Salt Lake City—The Governor’s Office of Economic Opportunity (Go Utah) recently changed the service model of its Center for Rural Development (CRD) team. This new model assigns each rural outreach officer to specific counties and communities. Like the government association business model, the CRD model will foster interactions with business and community leaders while responding to local economic challenges and opportunities.

New employees

In addition to James Dixon, Associate Director of the CRD team, and Eden Johnson, Rural Outreach Manager, the team welcomes Colette Cox and Forest Turner as Rural Outreach Managers.

“Colette and Forest are great additions to our already strong rural team,” said Ryan Starks, general manager of business services. “The Center for Rural Development now has more resources supporting rural Utah than at any other time in the state’s history. Rural resource wealth aligns with Governor Cox’s commitment to providing economic opportunity for all Utahans.

Colette Cox

Colette Cox will serve as Outreach Manager for Beaver, Garfield, Grand, Iron, Kane, San Juan and Washington Counties, supporting the Southeast Utah Government Associations. She has served rural communities for the past 18 years in the areas of economic strategy, innovative startup development, small business consulting and workforce development.

“I have a genuine love for rural Utah and the people who make up the heart of our small communities. It’s where I come from and where I feel most at home,” said Colette Cox. “I strive to understand the uniqueness of each community and listen to the needs and desires of residents, businesses and elected officials.”

Colette Cox holds a bachelor’s degree in business marketing from Utah State University and an MBA from the University of North Alabama.

forest turner

Forest Turner will serve Carbon, Emery, Juab, Millard, Piute, Sanpete, Sevier and Wayne counties, supporting the Six County and Southeast Utah Government Associations. He has served rural Utah communities for the past 15 years. Turner has expertise in the following areas: workforce development, recruitment support for employers, hiring incentives, internship development, participation in numerous career fairs and other community events.

Raised in a small farming community in Cache Valley, Turner is originally from Utah. He earned a bachelor’s degree in college with a minor in English from Brigham Young University–Idaho.

About the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Opportunity

Under the direction of Governor Spencer J. Cox, the Governor of Utah’s Office of Economic Opportunity (Go Utah) provides resources and support for starting, growing, and recruiting businesses. It also leads to an increase in tourism, film production, outdoor recreation, and mixed martial arts in Utah. Using state resources and contracts with the private sector, the office administers programs in economic areas with the greatest development potential and opportunity for Utahans.

About Keneth T. Graves

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