MALTA -- Shelby Schneider, a veteran of Saratoga County's economic development efforts, has been appointed the new president and CEO of the Saratoga County Prosperity Partnership, the partnership announced on Tuesday.
Schneider, previously the partnership's vice president, has been interim president for the last month, since the resignation of former president Marty Vanags.
Schneider has 17 years of local economic development experience, having worked for both the partnership and for the Saratoga Economic Development Corp. Since 2016, she has served as director of business retention and expansion, and then vice president of the Saratoga Partnership, which is based in Malta.
"I have a great passion for economic development," she said on Tuesday.
A native of Tribes Hill, Schneider graduated from Amsterdam High School and Skidmore College. She previously spent 13 years with SEDC as an economic development specialist and managing the county's Empire Zone program. She was with SEDC during its marketing campaign for the Luther Forest Technology Campus, which brought the GlobalFoundries computer chip to the county. Schneider has also worked in marketing for Schmaltz Brewing in Clifton Park.
“Shelby has nearly two decades of experience working in economic development and is well respected among community and business leaders both in Saratoga County and throughout the state," Saratoga Partnership Board Chairman Kevin Hedley said. " I know she will provide the organization with strong leadership moving forward."
Vanags, the partnership's founding president, resigned in January after five years on the job, during most of which the Prosperity Partnership was competing with SEDC to be the county's lead economic development organization. The Prosperity Partnership was created by the county Board of Supervisors in 2014 following a falling out between the county and SEDC, which at the time received some county funding, but was and is a private non-profit group controlled by business interests.
Many businesses eyeing the county as a location found the competition confusing. Under an agreement reached last year, the organizations ended their competition and will cooperate in economic development planning, with SEDC focusing on marketing Saratoga County to new business prospects and the Prosperity Partnership focusing on working with local communities on municipal economic development planning and site preparation.
Under Schneider’s leadership, the Saratoga Partnership team is expected to continue its Next Wave Communities Initiative, which assists communities in developing tailored economic development plans. The partnership is currently working with the towns of Moreau, Malta and Galway, and the village of Ballston Spa.
“I thank the Saratoga Partnership board for its confidence and support, and am honored to have the opportunity to lead the organization," Schneider said in a released statement. "With a strong and growing economy in Saratoga County, I am excited to lend my experience to leverage new public and private investment and create jobs and opportunities in our communities. I look forward to working closely with the board and am committed to fully engaging all of our stakeholders including elected officials, and businesses and community leaders.”
The Saratoga Partnership has worked on Key Capture Energy, the state’s largest battery energy storage facility, in Stillwater; the Proctors-Universal Preservation Hall in Saratoga Springs, which has been transformed into a year-round, arts and cultural venue; Land Remediation Inc.’s new $1.8 million corporate headquarters in Waterford; aiding development of Esperanto’s Oboy commercial bakery in Ballston Spa; and the planned $60 million conversion of the long-vacant 230,000-square-foot Victory Specialty Packaging mill in the village of Victory into 186 housing units and commercial space.