Former Clear Lake Chamber, EDC leader found dead

by Marianne Gasaway

Former Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development leader David Collins has died.

Police found Collins dead in his Washington, Iowa home after being requested to check on him just before noon on Wednesday, July 22.  No foul play is suspected.

Collins moved to Washington in 2018 to become the director of the Washington Economic Development Group.

“David had the fortune to spend his last month traveling with family and friends,” according to Michelle Redlinger, executive director of the Washington Chamber of Commerce.  “He was a faithful Rotarian, a political activist, and an enthusiastic Nebraska Cornhusker.  The Washington Business Partnership has lost a great leader that had a deep passion for the success of the WEDG and Washington County.”

Collins served as executive director of the Clear Lake Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce (Chamber) from January 1994 to June 2006.   During that time he played a key role in numerous projects and activities, including: recruitment of Serta Mattress, Lawrence Transportation, Alliant’s Emery Generating Station, Charlie Brown Child Care Center, Meadow Lakes Apartments and Lake Plaza Senior Housing.  At the time he resigned to accept the position of Economic Development Director for the Hubbard County Regional Economic Development Authority in Park Rapids, Minn., he listed an increase in membership by over 270 percent, numerous new chamber/ community events, and addition of the Main Street Trolley, among his accomplishments. There was also more than

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