The Horizon Foundation has appointed Rachel Busch, CEcD, to the position of business development director.
In this role, Busch will establish and strengthen relationships with Southwest Florida businesses that are committed to the region’s economic vitality and future growth. The Horizon Foundation raises private-sector money to support economic development initiatives and invest in the long-term prosperity of Lee County’s economy.
Busch’s experience includes public and private sector positions in Florida and Arizona.
In 2021, Busch established Bubbly Bee, a mobile tap truck created by transforming a vintage Piaggio Ape vehicle. Bubbly Bee is available for public and private events, and is equipped to serve beer, wine, prosecco, mimosas and non-alcoholic options.
She previously was director of sales for Cigent Technology’s cybersecurity managed services division, offering solutions that identify IT infrastructure breaches and protect businesses from cyberattacks. As the company’s director of public relations, Busch led public relations and grant writing activities.
Busch’s public sector roles included strategic projects manager for Lee County, where she developed plans, policies and incentives to encourage both redevelopment and commercial development. She helped establish the “DevelopLee” initiative to market and enhance areas that struggled to rebound after the recession.
In Arizona, Busch held roles as a business analyst for the Maricopa Small Business Development Center, economic vitality specialist for the City of Scottsdale, and research and marketing analyst for the City of Avondale. She also worked for a commercial real estate brokerage firm pursuing and developing relationships with business owners, developers and government officials to attract and retain retail-based businesses.
Busch earned a Bachelor of Science degree in regional development from the University of Arizona and a Master of Public Administration degree with an emphasis on urban management from Arizona State University. She completed a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) program through the International Economic Development Council.