LSU Stephenson Entrepreneurship Institute partners with LED on Economic Development Certification

Economic development efforts in Louisiana have been growing exponentially in recent years. Louisiana Economic Development (LED) is the state run organization chartered with strengthening the state’s business environment and creating a more vibrant economy. Their goal is to, “reposition Louisiana as the next great American state for business investment, quality of life and economic opportunity.”

Many of the state and local efforts to increase entrepreneurship and drive the economy have paid off, especially the digital media and angel investor tax credits. Training economic development professionals is another way the state is continuing to push growth in all sectors, including entrepreneurship.

Today, the LSU Stephenson Entrepreneurship Institute announced a partnership with LED to provide LSU’s Economic Development Certification Program. LSU Executive Education will administer the initiative as one of its open enrollment programs, similar to the longstanding Executive Development Program.

According to LSU Executive Education, the two-year program is designed for economic development professionals, chamber of commerce staff, elected officials, local civic leaders and other business professionals interested in economic development.

David Kolzow will act as Dean for the Economic Development Certification Program

The program will be led and designed by David Kolzow. With more than three decades of experience as an economic development executive and professor, Kolzow has shaped the field in many ways, developing professional training programs in multiple states and publishing such works as his seminal book, Strategic Planning for Economic Development.

The International Economic Development Council certifies the program’s basic course. Program courses are offered multiple times a year on the South Campus of LSU. The upcoming schedule is available in the press release here.

LED Secretary Stephen Moret called the partnership with LSU a strong move to grow the professional certification program. “We’re thrilled that LSU will help guide our state’s economic development certification program,” Moret said. “Gaining the resources of a major research institution and the visibility of Louisiana’s flagship university provides a permanent boost for professional training in this vital field. In particular, we believe the Stephenson Entrepreneurship Institute at LSU is uniquely skilled and well-suited to lead this effort.”

“Our partnership with LED in this venture is just another example of the way the LSU Stephenson Entrepreneurship Institute is working to enhance economic development,” said Charles D’Agostino, the institute’s interim executive director. “We are confident that with this program’s new direction, including the participation of LIDEA, we will see more professionals taking advantage of this opportunity.”

For more information about the Louisiana Economic Development Certification program, contact Robin Kistler at or 225-578-1190. To register for the program, visit