Ms. Diane Lupke, CEcD, FM, has more than twenty-five years of experience in the management of, and program and policy development for, all aspects of community economic development. She has provided technical assistance to more than 75 cities, states, and non-profit organizations regarding governance, strategic planning, market analysis, work force development, job creation, and neighborhood revitalization. Ms Lupke is an authority on the use of tax credits and other special tools for development.
Since the initiation of the Federal Empowerment Zones and Enterprise Communities program, she has worked with the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development to assist localities in improving the effectiveness of their programs. Most recently, she testified before the Congressional House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight during its review of federal Empowerment Zones.
Throughout her career, Ms. Lupke has worked with non-profit organizations as a board member, volunteer, and consultant, helping to build the capacity of volunteers and trustees to lead and support their organizations, develop programs, and raise funds.
One of the more challenging areas of her experience is in moving individuals from public and social service assistance to employment that will sustain a family, both financially and in spirit. While a Board member of Aurora, Inc., a transitional residence for women recovering from substance abuse, she helped to develop a program to provide the women with work experience that would enable them to move into full time permanent employment. More recently, she has worked to improve the economic opportunity of lower income individuals by building personal assets, self-employment, and entrepreneurship through alternative business strategies. One client in Gary, Indiana, is working to create jobs and new businesses for its residents through a housing development cluster strategy, incorporating specialized education and on the job training in the building trades and manufacturing.
Ms Lupke is also a skilled and experienced trainer. She has written and conducted numerous training sessions on the subjects of neighborhood economics, entrepreneurship, and strategic planning. Recently, she conducted a training course on the use of tax credits and geographically-based incentives for the British Urban Regeneration Association in London, England. Currently, she is teaching:
• Introduction to Economic Development and Neighborhood Strategies for the International Economic Development Council; and
• Federal Tools for the University of Oklahoma Economic Development Institute.
She is co-author of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development publication Financing Entrepreneurship in Distressed Urban Areas.
Ms. Lupke is best known for her work in the design and direction of a program using enterprise zones that resulted in the comprehensive re-development of Indiana's poorest areas. During her tenure with the Indiana Enterprise Zone Board, Indiana's program attained the highest per capita job creation of all programs nationally; it remains one of the more successful programs in the U.S. She continued this work as a consultant to the Lilly Endowment, Inc., designing a $4.2 million grant program that strengthened Indiana enterprise zones by providing a laboratory for new and creative approaches to community-based development in low income areas.
Currently, Diane Lupke & Associates is assisting the State of Illinois to increase the availability of seed capital for Illinois businesses by identifying and supporting community-based seed capital funds through its Fund of Funds initiative.
Firm President Diane C. Lupke, CEcD, has over twenty-five years of experience with development zones and tax incentive strategies. She and her associates have crafted legislation for seven states, testified before Congress and state legislatures, and assisted more than 100 designated zones in improving their programs and attaining their goals.
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