The Arkansas Economic Development Commission (AEDC) has appointed Esperanza Massana-Crane as Director of the Minority and Women-Owned Businesses (MWOBE) Division, commission officials announced Thursday (January 28th). Massana-Crane will replace Patricia Brown, who retired in December 2020.
Massana-Crane is currently Marketing Director for AEDC. Previously, she worked recruiting businesses in Arkansas as a project manager in the business development division of AEDC. She will assume her new role within the MWOBE division on February 1, 2021.
“In her various roles at AEDC over the past seven years, Esperanza has demonstrated exceptional leadership, professionalism and dedication in all of the tasks assigned to her,” said the Secretary. at Trade Mike Preston. “We have conducted an extensive search for the next person to fill this position, and we are confident that Esperanza’s diverse professional portfolio and experience will be an incredible asset to the State as she enters her new role as director of the MWOBE division. Pat Brown has dedicated many years to improving the lives of Arkansans as a director, and I am confident that Esperanza will continue to lead the division with excellence and demonstrate its commitment to the business communities it serves. I look forward to seeing the MWOBE Division thrive under Esperanza’s leadership.
The MWOBE division within AEDC promotes the growth and sustainability of minority and women-owned businesses by providing technical and professional assistance, state vendor certification, and networking and business opportunities. with AEDC partners in state and federal governments, higher education, credit institutions, and the private sector.
“My focus and passion in economic development is to create opportunity,” Massana-Crane said. “I look forward to elevating our women- and minority-owned businesses and the important role they play in our diverse economy. It is an honor and a privilege to follow in Pat Brown’s footsteps and build on his legacy.
Originally from El Salvador, Massana-Crane earned her bachelor’s degree and MBA from Harding University, where she also served as an adjunct professor in international business. She is fluent in Spanish and German, as well as an intermediate level of French.