WEDG director Collins dies


Washington Economic Development Group Executive Director David Collins died unexpectedly at his home on July 22.

Collins was found dead in his home just before noon on Wednesday during a welfare check.

“The Washington Business Partnership has lost a great leader that had a deep passion for the success of WEDG and Washington County,” the Washington Chamber of Commerce posted on its website. “Please keep his friends and family in your thoughts and prayers.”

Collins, 63, was named executive director of WEDG in December 2018.

Shortly after taking the job, Collins told The News that he was excited for the economic opportunities he saw in Washington County.

“You’ve got some nice little communities that are ahead of the curve with YMCAs and community centers,” Collins said. “The downtown renovation I’ve seen going on in a number of communities is outstanding. Infrastructure is being addressed, and some of the areas weak in infrastructure are being addressed.”

One of his goals was to work with all of the communities in the county.

“We’re based in Washington, but we’d like to have stronger relations with the communities throughout the county and see what we can do to assist them,” he said.

Prior to taking the WEDG position, Collins worked as the executive director of the Hubbard County Regional Economic Development Commission in Park Rapids, Minn., for 12 years.

Before that, he worked at the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce.

Collins was a Nebraska native and attended the University of Nebraska.

According to the Washington Chamber of Commerce, Collins spent the past month traveling with family and friends.


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