Portland Development Commission creates economic growth and opportunity for Portland.

Portland Development Commission

Created by Portland voters in 1958, Portland Development Commission (PDC) has been a driving force in Portland’s reputation for vibrancy and livability. As Portland’s urban renewal and economic development agency, PDC integrates business, economic, and property development to create jobs and investment that provide a full range of employment opportunities and economic benefits to all residents in the region.

The agency has played a major role in keeping Portland one of America’s most livable cities. Over the past half century, PDC has managed 25 urban renewal areas with plans that have changed the face of Portland, making it a better place to live for all Portlanders. Currently, PDC has 17 active urban renewal areas and works extensively in Portland’s neighborhoods to deliver a broad range of neighborhood improvement programs. Specifically, PDC invests in the place-making and quality of life, job creation, innovation and economic opportunity that will transform Portland into one of the most globally competitive, equitable, and healthy cities in the world, with prosperity shared by Portlanders of all colors, incomes and neighborhoods.

PDC is governed by a five-member volunteer Board of Commissioners appointed by the Mayor and approved by City Council. The Board is authorized by City Charter to administer the business activities of the agency. For fiscal year 2016-17, PDC’s Adopted Budget totals $296 million in expenditures with 85.5 full-time equivalent (FTE) employees.


  • Drive the creation and implementation of strategies that foster inclusive economic development with an emphasis on increasing access to high quality employment, equitable wealth creation, and community capacity to support business vitality.
  • Provide overall strategic direction and methodology to develop action plans for the agency’s target industry clusters (Athletic & Outdoor, Green Cities, Technology & Media, Metals & Machinery, and Healthcare) that provide high-quality employment opportunities as well as the enterprise zone and business finance programs that support this work. 
  • Develop the overall strategic direction and methodology for community-led, community-driven, and/or community-focused economic development initiatives to promote the growth of neighborhood small businesses, connect residents to employment, and steer local development towards community desired solutions.
  • Drive development and implementation of a cross-cutting, inclusive entrepreneurial and innovation strategy to support growth of diverse start-up and emerging Portland based companies. Ensure programs provide continuum of support for growing firms with diverse founders and identify opportunities to further strategic partnerships with higher education around R&D and tech-transfer.
  • Lead efforts to develop and implement an international trade strategy including export of goods and services, trade missions, and attendance at trade shows that support inclusive economic growth.
  • Lead efforts to coordinate and synchronize PDC Economic Development activities with regional economic development organizations including Oregon Business Development Department and Greater Portland Inc. 


Ten or more years of progressive experience in regional, city, and/or neighborhood economic development policy and business, industry cluster, and/or community development is essential. At least eight years of leadership or management experience with five years in economic development is required. Experience in strategic planning, complex problem solving and decision-making is essential including the ability to address project related and long term financial, organizational, economic development, and public policy issues. Experience with public/private partnerships is ideal as is knowledge of business and private finance. A Bachelor's degree in business, finance, public administration or related field highly desired. A Master’s degree in business administration, finance, public policy or public administration is ideal. An equivalent combination of training and experience will be considered.