ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – The Development Corporation of Abilene has been recognized as the international development corporation of the year for 2023.

Head of the DCOA Misty Mayo and her team were recognized at the city council meeting Thursday. Mayo took that time to thank her team and all who made this award possible.

“Because in my 20 year career in Economic Development, to receive the international Development Council’s recognition of Economic Development organization of the year, is a highlight of my career, so thank you for the extra minute,” Mayo shared.

Since Mayo began her tenure in 2019, the DCOA’s collaborative initiatives have yielded 37 projects selecting Abilene for expansion or relocation, with 30 of these originating from local, established companies. These endeavors have brought a total capital investment commitment of more than $2.8 billion to the community.

In a subsequent part of the meeting, Mayo introduced Project Morello, a proposal that harmonizes with the DCOA’s strategic plan to enhance business retention, expansion, and workforce development.

Mayo elaborated on the project, explaining that Petrosmith, a prominent equipment supplier in the oil and gas sector, is looking to develop innovative products. She added that the company has establishing an on-site welding school, resulting in the graduation of 40 skilled welders to date.

“If the public is thinking about what they do, it is things like the vessels and tankers and piping systems that are used in the oil and gas industry as an example. There are other things that they are involved in, and this project will allow them to expand within the area of innovation for the oil and gas industry and the other industries that they service,” Mayo explained.

The company anticipates the construction of a new 25,000 square-foot facility as part of this project, with a projected total capital investment of $25 million. This initiative is expected to preserve 415 existing jobs while generating 250 new employment opportunities over the course of the next seven years. The average wage for these positions is estimated to be $80,864. To support this endeavor, the DCOA is requesting a proposed incentive of $2,750,000, which will be paid out once the company initiates its investments and begins to hire employees.