Cabinet for Economic Development
Three Kentuckians Receive the 2005 Governor's Economic Development Leadership Award

Press Release Date:  Thursday, November 03, 2005  
Contact Information:  Mandy Lambert, (502) 564-7670  



FRANKFORT, KY –Tonight three distinguished Kentuckians received the Governor's Economic Development Leadership Award.  The awards were presented by Governor Ernie Fletcher during the Tenth Annual Governor's Economic Development Leadership Awards Dinner held in conjunction with the Kentucky Association for Economic Development’s (KAED) annual meeting in Lexington, Kentucky.

“I congratulate the talented and dedicated recipients of the 2005 Governor’s Economic Development Leadership Award,” said Governor Fletcher. “It is our hope that these awards not only recognize the leaders in Kentucky’s economic development efforts, but that they will also inspire others to take the initiative and lead their own communities.”


Recipients of the 2005 Governor's Economic Development Leadership Award are as follows:


Judge Michael BuchanonBowling Green; Warren County Judge-Executive Michael Buchanon has been instrumental in the economic development success of Bowling Green for more than a decade.  As a leader of his community, Judge Buchanon has been actively involved in numerous public and community service positions including serving as a Chairman of the Metropolitan Planning Organization, Barren River Area Development Regional Water Council and the Bowling Green-Warren County Drug Task Force.  He is also past-Chairman of the Kentucky Council of Area Development Districts, the Barren River Area Development District and past-President of the Kentucky County Judge-Executive Association.  Additionally, Buchanon serves as a board member for the Kentuckians for Better Transportation; Community Action of Southern Kentucky; Commonwealth Health Corporation; South Central Kentucky Regional Development Authority; Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce; Downtown Business Association; and the Governor’s Task Force on Local Governments to name just a few.  Judge Buchanon was recently awarded the 2005 County Courthouse Award on behalf of the Kentucky Transpark at the National Association of Counties (NACo), which are awarded annually to three elected officials who have improved the lives of citizens through outstanding governance and strong leadership.  Of the 3,000-plus member counties throughout the U.S., Warren County was the only to receive the award in recognition for its outstanding regional economic initiative and innovative practices for Kentucky Transpark.   In addition, Judge Buchanon received the 2005 Kentucky Association for Economic Development LG&E Community Award for Innovation recognizing Transpark for best practices as a regional development effort as environmentally friendly, high-tech business and commerce park.



William P. Butler - Covington; Serves as Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Corporex Companies, Inc., which he founded in 1965, and Chairman of Eagle Hospitality Properties Trust, a newly formed hospitality REIT sponsored by Corporex.  Under Mr. Butler’s leadership, Corporex has evolved into a diverse financial investment company focusing on astute investing, family country clubs, hospitality and real estate development and management.  His business acumen and leadership skills have been nationally recognized.  He has received the National Entrepreneur of the Year Award presented by the Kaufmann Institute for Entrepreneurship and sponsored by Ernst & Young, USA Today, NASDAQ and CNN.  He is also a founding member of the Starwood Development Board of Advisors.  Locally, Mr. Butler is founder and past-President of the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Parks (NAIOP).  He is also a member and past director of the Greater Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce and the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.  As a civic leader, Mr. Butler has been involved in numerous initiatives especially in regional planning and development.   He is the founder and past Co-Chairman of the Metropolitan Growth Alliance, which was dedicated to creating an inclusive vision for the Northern Kentucky community.  In 1981, Mr. Butler chaired the Economic Development Task Force Report for then-Governor, John Y. Brown, Jr., which provided the first vision for Northern Kentucky.  He also co-chaired Quest, a visioning process for Northern Kentucky’s future, which provided a community development roadmap for the next 20 years.


Stephen Poe – Louisville; Owner of Louisville-based real estate development firm Poe Companies, Mr. Poe is known in the industry and community for utilizing an entrepreneurial approach to development, conquering complex projects and creating strategic partnerships.  Rather than specializing in one type of development, Mr. Poe looks for underperforming assets, where value can be created and risk minimized.  Mr. Poe feels strongly about the need for strategic development in Louisville’s downtown area.  Because of that, he is involved in the building and developing of more than $400 million in projects in the area.  His largest development to date is Louisville’s newest convention hotel, the Louisville Marriott Downtown in which he serves as Managing Partner of the ownership group, the Kentucky Convention Hotel Partners.  In addition, he is involved in the development of numerous additional projects including a new 140-room Residence Inn hotel in downtown, which will be the first Level 7 Residence Inn prototype.  Furthermore, Mr. Poe is spearheading the development of RiverPark Place, a mixed-use development located in Louisville’s Waterfront Park. Once completed, RiverPark Place will bring to the downtown area approximately 1,500 housing units, office and commercial space, a public plaza and a marina.  His newest role is as member on a team developing Museum Plaza.   When complete, the new 600,000 square foot tower will include an art museum, office space, and luxury housing.  Remaining active in both the industry and Louisville community, Mr. Poe was recently elected President of the Louisville Apartment Association, after previously serving as Vice-President of the organization, and serves on the Board of Trustees for the University of Louisville.


Since 1996, thirty-five Kentuckians have received the Governor’s Economic Development Leadership Award, which were designed to recognize those individuals in Kentucky whose vision and leadership have been instrumental in improving our state’s local, regional and statewide economy.


The Kentucky Association for Economic Development also presented several awards to its members including:


§         2005 Annual Service Award for Service to KAED – presented to 14 KAED members;

§         East Kentucky Power Community Professional of the Year; and

§         Delta Air Lines Allied Professional of the Year.