David Hooks Hired As Director Of Gadsden-Etowah IDA

By William Thornton | wthornton@al.com

The Gadsden-Etowah County Industrial Development Authority has hired a regional and state economic development figure to lead it.

James David Hooks has been named executive director of the authority. The authority’s long-time former executive director, Mike McCain, died in 2015.

Hooks has served as Director of Innovation at UAB’s The Edge of Chaos in the School of Public Health. Previously, he has served as Jefferson County’s Director of Capital Structure and Investment, was a senior manager of industrial recruitment for the Tennessee Valley Authority, and served as the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) director.

He earned an MPA in municipal finance from UAB and is a graduate of the Public Finance Institute at the University of Michigan. He is the author of “The Wisdom of Solomon: Ancient Teachings for Modern Business.”

Gadsden Mayor Sherman Guyton said Hooks will take industrial recruitment efforts to “the next level,” while IDA President Larry Means said Hooks brings a “wealth of experience.”

“We are glad to be able to bring David home. He’s come a long way since serving on the Attalla City Council,” Means said. “While we have always been proud to see David’s accomplishments from a distance, we are excited to give him a chance to work for Gadsden, Etowah County, and all of our cities.”

Hooks will join Assistant Director Bill Greene.