After a highly successful career leading the High Point Economic Development Corp., Loren Hill, the organization’s president, is stepping down from that position after two decades.
Hill will continue to lead the group until the end of the year and then he will start doing some other undefined work in the field of economic development.
Hill has been the point man for economic development in High Point for years, and, for the last five years, he’s served on the Guilford County Economic Development Alliance – a countywide group devoted to bringing new business to Guilford County.
Hill said he’ll retire from the City of High Point on January 1, 2021. It will have been a 20-year career as president of the High Point EDC.
“This job has been the best job I’ve ever had,” he wrote in an email.
He added: “A year ago this month, I told now-Interim City Manager Randy McCaslin, the High Point EDC staff, and Brent Christensen of the timing. I informed my board of directors this past March and the Leadership Group of the Guilford County Economic Development Alliance in June.”
Hill said his intent in 2021 and beyond is to “re-direct rather than retire.” That means, he said, that he hopes to find work in economic development. After Labor Day, he’ will start focusing on whatever his new role might be.
In the 20 years that Hill has been leading the recruitment effort in High Point, it has been somewhat amazing how many businesses large and small have located new operations in that area. The city saw economic decline in the later part of last century as a good deal of furniture industry left. However, that mass exodus left Hill and his team with a lot of empty but usable space for large companies to move into, and in recent years there has been a lot of real estate for Hill to show off to prospects. Consequently, many long dead buildings in that city are now revitalized.
The High Point EDC annual meeting will be held in November, and Hill said that, at that meeting, he plans to publicly thank all the people who have supported and helped him during his time in this job.
When asked which of the successes for the city of High Point he’s been most proud of playing a role in, he said one of his fondest memories was going up to the Ralph Lauren office in New York in an attempt to convince the company to greatly expand its presence in High Point. That happened and the relationship between the company and the city over the years proved to be a major boon for bringing in jobs.
Hill, a native of High Point, has been married for 30 years to Joyce Hill, a retired department head of hospitality education at Guilford Technical Community College. She is known as something of a gourmet chef. Despite that, Hill has used the pandemic as an excuse to start walking a lot and has shed an impressive amount of weight.