Aurora Mayor Tom Mrakas on Thursday evening was honoured with the Hazel McCallion Community Leadership Award by the Economic Developers Council of Ontario (EDCO) at its annual Excellence Awards in Toronto.
The award is given to an elected official whose work “reflects the growing importance of positive influence within the economic development profession and who has made a significant impact on their peers, the industry, their community and or the overall influence of economic development.”
“I am very humbled to receive this award from EDCO,” said Mayor Mrakas. “Fostering sustainable economic growth in our community has been a priority of mine since taking office, and I’m incredibly proud of the work we’ve done to support our business community, attract new investment and create the right conditions so that businesses can thrive in Aurora. Of course, all this work is a team effort, and I want to thank the many businesses that we work with, as well as our amazing economic development team at the Town.”
As a founding board member of the Aurora Economic Development Corporation — a non-for-profit corporation that provides strategic leadership of economic development on behalf of Aurora Town Council — Mayor Mrakas plays a pivotal role in developing the Town’s economic development strategy to support business and attract new investment. Through his work with the AEDC, Mayor Mrakas has been heavily involved in numerous economic development initiatives, including industry roundtables to encourage growth in several target sectors, such as healthcare, automotive and food processing.
Mayor Mrakas has also been a strong advocate for downtown businesses, working closely with the AEDC and Town Staff to develop policies to revitalize Aurora’s downtown core and that promote sustainable business growth. Moreover, Mayor Mrakas is a strong supporter of shop local initiatives, and often serves as a key ambassador for the Town, communicating closely with prospective and current business owners about the economic advantages of opening or expanding operations in Aurora.
EDCO was founded in 1957, and provides leadership to advance economic development as a profession and support municipalities in fostering economic prosperity in the province of Ontario. The Excellence Awards were handed out Thursday evening following EDCO’s 67th Annual Conference and Showcase.