SEA’s new CEO talks about his economic past, future

ast month, Sandoval County was abuzz with the news that the Sandoval Economic Alliance found a new CEO to take on the leadership role of economic development for the county. Steve Jenkins, a man with 42 years of economic development experience, takes on his new role at SEA on Monday, when he will replace Jami Grindatto, SEA’s CEO since its inception a little over three years ago. “I love a challenge,” Jenkins said, laughing. “In all seriousness, though, I think the community of Rio Rancho shows well.” Jenkins, who has worked in similar economic roles nationally, said he thinks the Southwest has a lot to offer in terms of attracting new business. “Rio Rancho has the reputation of being a fast-growing community,” Jenkins said. “I believe we can capitalize on that idea in a business sense.” Currently the president of the Fond du Lac Economic Development Corp. in Wisconsin, Jenkins said he has learned a few fundamental guidelines in his years in the economic realm. “One thing is that the ‘Great Recession’ (of 2008) actually reset the economy nationally and globally,” Jenkins said. “We are now dealing with an evolving economy, of which we don’t know what it’s going to…

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