East Falls, Philadelphia –East Falls Development Corporation (EFDC) Executive Director, Gina Snyder, has announced her resignation in order to travel with her family to the south of France for a year.  She will remain at the EFDC into the summer to support the organization through transition.

According to EFDC Board Chair, Sharon Jaffe, “the EFDC started as a wholly volunteer organization with almost no budget. Snyder has developed multiple funding streams that  have put EFDC on sound financial footing, with a budget that has grown to over $200,000 per year.  Gina worked tirelessly to encourage new investment in the business district, and to assist local property owners efforts  to improve their facades.”

Says Snyder, ”East Falls has changed a lot since I joined EFDC back in 2001. It has been a pleasure to lead the resurgence of our business district and I am proud of the group’s accomplishments.  We worked with Mural Arts to create new murals under the twin bridges and secured funds to light the Falls Bridge and renovate the historic Bathey House, now the Trolley Car Café; we added a parking lot and on-street parking along Ridge Avenue and installed streetscape improvements with new pedestrian scale street lights.  There is now “Gateway to East Falls” – a pedestrian island with signature signage to calm traffic and welcome people to the neighborhood.  We added crosswalks, banners and wayfinding signs, bicycle racks, and eco-art exhibits;  we brought in Farm to City and started the East Falls Farmers’ Market;  we sponsor two major events each year, and I am especially proud of the Dance on the Falls Bridge, which has grown into a regional attraction.”

In addition to her day to day work in the community, Snyder also has been involved in citywide economic development efforts, including ten years on the Board of Directors of Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations, where she helped originate the Commercial Corridor Working Group.  In addition, she started and led the Northwest Commercial Corridors Coalition, a working group of organizations in Chestnut Hill, Mt. Airy, Germantown, West Oak Lane, Roxborough, Manayunk and East Falls.

According to long-term board member, Carolyn Sutton, “Snyder’s leadership has been invaluable in building EFDC’s capacity to secure funding and implement projects. She has raised our profile with local and state agencies and  leaves the organization with several well-advanced projects underway.  EFDC has a strong Board of Directors in place that will undertake a search for its next Executive Director.”

Snyder is married to David Wootton, a professor at the Cooper Union in New York City, who is taking a sabbatical at Aix-Marseille University to conduct research.  They and their two children, Forrest and Tanner, will live in Marseille for the academic year beginning in September.

About the EFDC:  The EFDC is dedicated to the economic revitalization of East Falls for the benefit of its residents.  Beyond corporate governance, it has four active committees:  Real Estate, Events and Promotions, Design, and Business Improvement District.  Residents and businesses are encouraged to participate.

Employment opportunity:   Resumes are now being accepted for the position of Executive Director.  The EFDC board plans to fill the position by the end of May.  The employment ad is posted below.

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