Suzanne Loudamy, former editor of the Tri County Leader, has begun her new position as Executive Director of Troup Community Development Corporation (TCDC) and Executive Director of the Troup Chamber of Commerce.
When Loudamy made the decision to retire from the newspaper and made an official announcement on Facebook, she reported receiving a text message within a minute. The message was from Gene Cottle, city manager of Troup.
““I thought he was going to give me a hard time about leaving the paper,” Loudamy said.
Instead, he wanted to discuss the possibility of having someone more consistently represent the TCDC, that someone being Loudamy.
Though her employment did not become official until the first of this year, Loudamy attended training in November that was presented by Texas Economic Development Council and Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service.
The position of executive director was created and Loudamy was hired as a part-time employee of TCDC. No list of duties was presented to Loudamy as she is the first to hold the post.
“It [duties] came out of training and what I’ve heard others do,” Loudamy stated.
Having to create her own list of responsibilities, Loudamy reported that she will attempt to remain in regular contact with city businesses while also searching for any new businesses looking for a place to start. She will seek out grants to fund the various projects of the TCDC as well.
“Leaving Tri County Leader was not an easy decision,” Loudamy remarked. “I was looking for a change, something different. This is still challenging. This will be a blessing that has just been waiting on me.”
Loudamy was attracted to the position because she had gotten to know the people in Troup through her work at the newspaper.
“They are just such wonderful people,” Loudamy affirmed. “I’ve yet to meet a frowning face. Troup is just a great place to be.”
Loudamy feels that with her municipal experience serving as both a member of the city council and as the mayor of Whitehouse she will be a good fit for the job at TCDC.
She reported that the TCDC is funded by a ½-cent sales tax and grants generally help finance projects, often through matching funds.
Most recently, TCDC has provided for new sidewalks and lampposts on the north side of Duval Street in downtown. The new walkways with the ramps and handrails are now ADA compliant.
Though nothing is official, Loudamy reported the TCDC wants to complete sidewalks and lighting on the south side of Duval. She also stated that Cottle has looked into costs for the possible building of a splash pad and for playground equipment for city parks, but these ideas have yet to be presented to the TCDC board.
There is currently an open place on the board, according to Loudamy, and TCDC is looking for a resident to fill the vacant seat. An application can be found online at www.trouptexas.org under the tab “apply to serve on city board or commission.”
TCDC can be followed on its Facebook page Troup Community Development Corporation.
Loudamy encourages residents to attend the meetings of TCDC. The next scheduled meeting is 5:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 22, which will be followed by the Troup City Council meeting. Both meetings will be held in the Cameron-J. Jarvis Troup Municipal Library.