Diana A. Ramirez

Title: 
Director, Economic Development & Strategic Investments
Organization: 
Travis County, TX
Bio: 

Diana is Director of the Economic Development & Strategic Investments (EDSI) office, established in January 2016. The office brought several stand-alone programs together and has been adding programs and tools to the County’s toolkit in the 2 ½ years since inception. Central to EDSI’s work is the preparation of a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy that uses a community-driven process to pursue economic inclusion, sustainability, and resilience.

Diana’s team leads the following efforts: redevelopment of underutilized county properties; development of campus and facility master plans; issuance of conduit debt for affordable housing, health facilities, and other economic development projects; construction of affordable housing projects as general partner and/or general contractor; management of property tax rebate and abatement agreements; investment of County funds and Central Health (hospital district) funds in accordance with the Texas Public Funds Investment Act; and negotiation and funding of Public Improvement Districts (PIDs).

Diana and her County team recently secured a 99-year, $430 million ground lease of 308 Guadalupe Street after voters defeated a bond proposition to build a new Civil and Family courts facility at that site. With the proposed site leveraged, the County team began a new site search that eventually led the County team to pursue a competitive, real estate turn-key development project. Diana has also secured an interlocal agreement with the City of Austin for joint compliance on four property tax rebate agreements with companies such as Apple and Samsung and led the drafting and development of the County’s PID policy and PID Affordable and Fair Housing Policy.

Diana earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master in Public Affairs from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs. She is a member of the GFOA and GFOA of Texas and is a Certified Government Finance Officer (CGFO). She has also earned the National Development Council’s Economic Development Finance Professional certificate. Diana is also a member of the Urban Land Institute – Austin’s Affordability Strategic Council.