Eloisa Klementich was named the new head of Invest Atlanta on Thursday, just weeks after the previous CEO abruptly resigned.
The board of the city’s economic development agency — led by Mayor Kasim Reed — approved the move with a unanimous vote and a round of applause during its monthly meeting.
The vote comes after Craig Richard stepped down in early January, sparking rampant speculation about his departure. Several people with knowledge of the decision said he was asked to resign, though neither Reed nor Richard have disclosed the reasons for the move publicly. It’s unclear whether his resignation is related to the hiring and subsequent firing of a new chief financial officer in December.
Klementich, previously Invest Atlanta’s managing director of business development, competed against Richard for the top job in 2014.
Prior to joining the agency, Klementich served as special assistant for economic development at the U.S. Economic Development Administration in the Office of the Secretary and also as California’s assistant deputy secretary for economic development and commerce, according to her online biography.
Invest Atlanta plays a critical role in attracting new businesses to the city while overseeing its economic development and revitalization programs.
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Staff writer J. Scott Trubey contributed to this report.