Our History


Robertson County Economic Development Board created to administer the proceeds of the newly instituted hotel/motel tax and proactively recruit new business and industry.


The Commission passed a resolution authorizing the Board to negotiate an “Payment-In-Lieu-of-Tax” program to incentivize local business growth.


The Board hired a full-time director and secured office space and administrative support in partnership with the Robertson County Chamber of Commerce.


A county commission resolution established a reserve fund which escrows PILOT receipts to be used for site and infrastructure development at the Board’s direction.


The Board continues to facilitate our economic competitiveness through a variety of programs including workforce development, site development, quality of life initiatives and tourism development.

Phone: 615-710-5944
[email protected]

Meet Our Economic Development Director

Vonda Gates is the Economic Development Director for Robertson County. She joins our organization after serving as the Director of Business Development with the Clarksville-Montgomery County IDB since February, 2019.

Before joining the Clarksville-Montgomery County IDB, Gates was the associate director of the Southwestern Kentucky Economic Development Council, having served in various roles with the organization since 2005.

A native of the Hopkinsville, KY area, Gates is a graduate of Western Kentucky University and has graduated from both the Oklahoma University Economic Development Institute and TVA’s Rural Leadership Institute.

Phone: 615-397-4194
[email protected]


Meet Our Assistant Director for Tourism & Economic Development

Sarah Warren joined the RCEDB team in March, 2022 and will focus on our efforts to promote and market the many tourism assets of Robertson County.

Sarah was most recently the administrative assistant to the management team at Bath Fitter in Springfield where she provided support to the local Plant Senior Management Team and Corporate Operations Team.

Sarah also has valuable experience in the non-profit sector, working in operations and HR at Plant the Seed and The Next Door, Inc. in Nashville.

She received a Bachelor of Arts in German from Samford University in 2005 and a Masters of Public Service Management from Cumberland University in 2016.


Jonathan Garner headshot

Phone: 615-384-8463
[email protected]


J0nathan Garner, Board Attorney

Attorney, Walker & Garner Attorneys

General Civil Litigation
Probate, Wills and Estates
Domestic and Family Law
Business Law

Current Board Members

Caleb Fuqua, Chair
Owner, Square One Construction

Matt Burnett, Vice Chair
Owner, Burnett Real Estate Group

Jim Moore, Secretary / Treasurer
Owner, G.S. Moore & Son

Jessica Blackburn
Owner, Crown Paving

Whitfield Hamilton
Partner, Panatonni Development

Keith Hoover

Willis Jepson
Owner, Jepson Family Farms

Jinnifer Hollingsworth Johnston
Owner, Five Star Building Group

Susan McClard
United Community Bank



Funding Sources

Our programs are funded by a 7% tax on all overnight stays at hotels, bed and breakfasts and Airbnbs. Each city receives 30% of receipts collected in their city limits to be used for economic development and tourism purposes, and 70% stays with RCEDB for the same purposes.

The Payment in Lieu of Tax (PILOT) program is a tax incentive designed to restructure the tax burden for companies who are interested in relocating or expanding in Robertson County. Instead of paying 100% of the property taxes on their desired location, companies (who are awarded PILOTs) pay a percentage of the taxes due for a set period of years. While this forgoes some tax revenue for the county and city in the near term, Robertson County benefits in the long run as new tax base is added, which would not have been collected had the relocation or expansion not taken place. New PILOT receipts are placed in a reserve fund at the county level, earmarked for use in site and infrastructure development projects.

Recent Success Stories

  • 2020: JRC doubles its Robertson County HQ, adding 50 new white-collar jobs.
  • 2019: Tate Ornamental opens a new facility in White House, with a $6 million investment and 50 new jobs
  • 2019: Airtech announces a 60,000 sf expansion and the addition of 30 new jobs including new technology innovations for the composites industry
  • 2018: Dorman Products expands to a new 800,000+ sf facility in TN-KY Business Park, with a $55 million investment and 215 new jobs
  • 2018: S3 Recycling moves its Nashville operations to the Bransford Business Center in Springfield, creating 25 new jobs and $2.1 million in capital investment
  • 2018: Lowes opens its first direct-to-consumer fulfillment center, adding 600 new jobs and $100 million in capital investment

Supporting Existing & New Industries in Robertson County

Site Development

  • We assist with the purchase and improvement of publicly owned properties, making sure they are “shovel ready.”
  • We evaluate new sites and work with state and regional agencies to find grant funds and use RCED funds as matches for infrastructure development.
  • We keep up-to-date inventory of available buildings and sites.

Workforce Development

  • We maintain the “Work In Robertson” job board.
  • We commissioned  a White Collar Workforce Study by Newmark Knight to identify and quantify the skills and job sectors of our out-commuting residents.
  • We work with Robertson County Chamber and Robertson County Schools to host career/job exploration fairs, job shadowing programs and advocate for new career/technical education programs.
  • We created the Manufacturing Leadership Experience to expose high school students to the breadth of careers available in our local industries.
  • We connect industries with CTE, TCAT and Vol State to develop training programs.