Focusing on recruiting new companies and expanding our existing business community, the Flagler County DEO professional team is trained to assist company executives and site consultants in every aspect of the site selection process.
The Economic Opportunity Advisory Council consists of nine members appointed by the Flagler County Board of County Commissioners based on his/her targeted industry expertise.
Partnerships with our local governments and municipalities are the backbone of Flagler Department of Economic Opportunity. Through local partnerships, we create a network of resources to assist businesses in all their needs.
Helga van Eckert
Helga van Eckert has over 15 years experience in driving public/private partnerships that promote the growth of new business while ensuring the retention and expansion of existing businesses, all while providing for an enhanced quality of life. Relocating from New Jersey, where she served as the Executive Director of a northern New Jersey city Department of Economic and Community Development, Redevelopment, Urban Enterprise Zone and Business Improvement District, Ms. Van Eckert has a reputation of being a strong leader, team builder and innovative problem-solver. In New Jersey she leaves behind a legacy of having negotiated and managed multiple developer/redeveloper agreements that have resulted in approximately 1.5 million square feet of industrial/warehouse space, over 1,000 new jobs and millions in municipal tax revenues. Helga has been charged with repositioning Flagler County to compete nationally in business recruitment and economic development.
Katrina Austin has more than 25 years of project management and team leading experience. Previously a Florida Real Estate Professional, she has extensive skills in contract negotiation and customer service. Prior to joining Flagler County’s Economic Development Team, Ms. Austin played a key role with Flagler County’s largest department, General Services. There she authored presentations for meetings with public & private sector entities, not-for-profit associations and the general public on a wide range of topics. In her role at the General Services Department, she was successful at securing approximately $150,000 in grants, creating a County brand for parks and transportation and managing a database of recreation facilities scheduling solution servicing approximately 1,2000 customers dynamically. Prior to coming to Flagler County she was the co-owner of a website development company, was employed in local government in Developmental Services, and has a background in graphic design and marketing. Her volunteer activities include the Florida Hospital Flagler Pink Army to raise breast cancer awareness and the Flagler County Schools Foundation. Ms. Austin served in the U.S. Army.
Lili Tuggle-Weir has a BFA in photography/digital imaging from Ringling College of Art and Design and an MA in Graphic & Environmental Design Edinburgh Napier University. She has ten-plus years of administrative experience in small business, government and high end gallery settings and has worked freelance as a photographer, graphic designer, web designer and illustrator for over twelve years. Lili moved to Florida from Maryland in 2008; she and her husband Andrew now live in Flagler Beach.
Business Concierge Services
Flagler County DEO prides itself on service to businesses to include connection to relocation services, temporary office space, employment assistance and temporary administrative support.