Name: Mary Beth Wood
Title: Executive Director
Company: Wayne Economic Development Corporation (WEDCO)
Address: 32 Commercial Street, Suite 1, Honesdale
Mary Beth Wood sees the success she has achieved in her life as a result of collaboration and great teamwork. “I do not see individual success because in my profession all endeavors are supported by a tremendous network of government, community, and economic development service providers that labor daily to advance our communities,” explains the executive director of the Wayne Economic Development Corporation (WEDCO).
While no two days at her job are the same in her profession, the director manages a small business, but also oversees development projects such WEDCO’s business park in Sterling Township. She collaborates with community partners on critical initiatives such as the business incubator in Honesdale and a recovery-to-work ecosystem.
“On any given day, I may be working with our legislators or county commissioners, government agencies, engineers, developers, business owners, consultants, or nonprofit organizations,” she notes.
Feeling privileged to work for WEDCO, a lead economic development organization in Wayne County, she helps to promote the strategic development of resources and infrastructure to support business growth.
With a specific focus on expanding infrastructure and positioning the county for future growth, her organization is working on broadband issues, industrial site development, entrepreneurial support, grant-writing, and strategic planning.
“During the pandemic, we are particularly concerned about retaining local businesses and do our best to connect them to available resources,” adds Wood.
Wood earned her bachelor’s degree from Dickinson College, but admits she is a true representation of the value of on-the-job-training and transferable skills. “I have tremendous support and encouragement from WEDCO’s board of directors and colleagues. I learn something new from them at every meeting,” she admits.
Her mentor is her predecessor Bob Suhosky who has shared a wealth of information and the knowledge he gained through his experiences. “He has been a good friend and mentor,” she adds.
Her job choices have been about providing service to others. “This has been the foundation of all the jobs I have held, including my current one. I am in service to my community through business assistance and strategic economic development,” said the executive director.
Feeling blessed to have a close family and numerous good friends, she is indebted to her parents, Richard and Jean Wood, her family’s lifelong teachers, who cultivated values and a strong work ethic through example for their family.
Wood is proud to represent Wayne County and rural communities in many state and regional organizations, such as the Pennsylvania Economic Development Association, Northeastern Pennsylvania Alliance, and the Pocono Counties Workforce Development Board.
She serves on the Honesdale Borough planning commission, and in a nod to her younger days, she is honored to be included in the Wayne Area Sports Hall of Fame.