Nov 04


by The Woodlands

The Woodlands, TX (OCTOBER 2017) The Woodlands Area Economic Development Partnership (EDP) celebrated their 20th Anniversary last month. EDP was established in September 1997 as an extension of The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce (The Chamber). In April of 2016 the EDP separated from The Chamber into their own entity, a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization. EDP is the only member based, non-profit Economic Development organization in Montgomery County which includes the master planned community of The Woodlands and the cities of Shenandoah and Oak Ridge North.

The organization is run by a staff of four. Gil Staley, Chief Executive Officer has been with the EDP for over 12 years, Holly Gruy has been with the company for more than 19 years and serves as the Vice President of Operations, Laura Lea Palmer joined over 6 years as the Vice President of Business Retention & Expansion and Ashley Byers has been with the organization for over 5 years and acts as the Administrative & Communications Coordinator. Combined the team has over 42 years of economic development experience.

As the lead economic development organization in The Woodlands Area, the EDP’s primary focus is job creation, capital investment, recruiting new businesses and supporting existing businesses in job retention and expansion. The EDP promotes The Woodlands Area as a premiere business destination and has traveled all over the world doing so in partnership with The Woodlands Township and the Greater Houston Partnership.

Businesses rely on the EDP as a primary source of information and influence. The EDP connects employers with a number of resources and offers these complimentary services on behalf of businesses in our area:

  • Coordinates business expansions & relocations
  • Facilitates business incentives with local & state officials
  • Assists with government, regulatory & transportation infrastructure needs
  • Is a business advocate for local, state & federal issues
  • Has strong relationships with developers & site selectors
  • Connects employers to resources: utility companies, research & development, workforce development & non-profit organizations
  • Provides profiles on the labor market statistics, traffic counts, demographics, population growth and other custom reports that impact local business

The EDP has a strong history of leadership of Past Chairman to include:
Dennis Singletary, Entergy, 1997-1998
Frank Robinson, Town Center Improvement District, 1998-1999
Steve Sanders, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital, 1999-2000
Walter Cooke, Carll Cooke and Donnenberg, 2000-2001
Ray Sanders, Woodforest National Bank , 2001-2002
Joe Michels, City of Oak Ridge North, 2002-2003
Chris Denison, Amegy Mortgage/Amegy Bank, 2003-2004
Frank Robinson , Town Center Improvement District, 2004-2005
Michael Barnhill, Entergy, 2005-2006
Shelley Waters, Merrill Lynch, 2006-2007
Jonathan Homeyer, Wells Fargo , 2007-2008
Clyde Parker, Winstead PC, 2008-2009
Mike Karlins, Karlins & Ramey, 2009-2010
Karen Hoylman, The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce, 2010-2011
Robert Collins, Montgomery County Precinct 3, 2011-2012
Chris Grice, Amegy Bank of Texas, 2012-2013
Jan Sieving, Repsol USA, 2013-2014
Stuart Lapp, Petroleum Wholesale, 2014-2015
Terry Sellers, Gallagher Benefit Services division of Arthur J. Gallagher, 2015-2016
Debbie Sukin, Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital, 2016-2017
Heidi Carney, Current Chair, First Financial Bank, 2017-2018

Gil Staley, CEO of The Woodlands Area Economic Development Partnership, said, "It has been my pleasure and honor to lead the EDP over the last eight years. I am thankful for a dedicated team that is committed to maintaining the economic vitality of our community. Over the last two decades, our Partners and Board of Directors has grown the EDP into one of the most well respected and recognized economic development organizations nationally and internationally.”

The EDP is publicly and privately supported by 92 funding partners active in the organization to include: Gold Partners: Strike, LLC, Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital, The Woodlands Development
Company, LP A Division of The Howard Hughes Corporation and The Woodlands Township.

Silver Partners: Caldwell Companies, CHI St. Luke’s Health The Woodlands Hospital, Consolidated Communications, Entergy Texas, Lone Star College System, Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center, McKesson Specialty Health, Petroleum Wholesale and Wells Fargo.

Bronze Partners: Abercrombie & Associates, PCC, A Strong CPA, adWhite marketing & design, Amegy Bank of Texas, American Financial & Automotive Services, Inc., Ameriprise Financial - Kristin L. Young LLC, Anadarko Petroleum Corp., Aon Hewitt, Bank of Texas, Bayside Printing, BB&T, Black Forest Ventures, LLC, British International School of Houston, Bush Law Firm, Calvetti Ferguson, Carr, Riggs & Ingram, LLC, CB&I, CenterPoint Energy, Chevron Phillips Chemical Company, City of Oak Ridge North ,City of Shenandoah, Community Bank of Texas, Community Impact Newspaper, Corporate Incentives, Inc., Cypressbrook Company, D.E. Harvey Builders, Dupuis & Polozola, LLC, Efficient Wealth Management, Fidelity Investments, First American Title, NCS, First Financial Bank, Frost Bank, Gallagher Benefit Services division of Arthur J. Gallagher, Gilbane Building Company, Haley Garcia Group, Jones Walker, Integrity Bank, Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, Linscomb & Williams, LJF Marketing, Lone Star Family Health Center, Martin Brower, Market Street The Woodlands, Matrix Technologies - Aqua Auto Wash Detail and Lube Center, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Montgomery County Precinct 3, Nexeo Solutions, Northwestern Mutual, One Source, Pioneer Bank, Richmond Realty - RE/MAX The Woodlands & Spring, Rock Materials, Repsol USA, Rob Eissler - Westwood Magnolia Parkway Improvement District, Sam Houston State University, Soules Insurance Agency, LP, Spirit of Texas Bank, Stephen F. Austin State University, Stibbs & Co. Attorneys P.C., Stream Realty, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands, The Blair Law Firm, The Club at Carlton Woods, The John Cooper School, The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce, The Woodlands Christian Academy, The Woodlands Resort & Conference Center, The Woodlands Waterway Arts Council, Inc., Tough Law Firm, PLLC, Viva The Woodlands Magazine, Waste Connections, Inc., Webber, Winstead PC, Woodforest Development, Inc., Woodforest National Bank, Woodlands Relo Group, Wright Business Technologies, Inc., Wright's Printing and Zenith Real Estate.

For further information on the EDP, visit or call 281 363-8130.