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Don Cunningham

May 30, 2012

Dear Friends,

You may have read about it by now and for that I apologize. I will be resigning my position as Lehigh County Executive on July 8 to become the next president and chief executive officer of the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp., a regional, public-private partnership charged with marketing and helping to create jobs and grow the economy in the Lehigh Valley.

For the last 17 years, I’ve served in public office as a city councilman, a mayor, a state cabinet secretary and now the elected executive of Lehigh County. I’m a lucky guy. The voters and Gov. Ed Rendell gave me a chance to serve the people of my hometown of Bethlehem, Lehigh County and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. I never felt like I was going to work because I was doing what I loved.

Nothing has given me more satisfaction in those positions than my work in economic development, whether it was helping with the economic renaissance of Bethlehem following the loss of Bethlehem Steel, helping to locate Ocean Spray and Boston Beer in our county during an economic recession, or helping to bring 300 PennDOT workers to Hamilton St. to help revitalize Downtown Allentown when I was a cabinet secretary.

As we get older, we tend to figure out what motivates us and satisfies us and what we are good at doing. I love the Lehigh Valley. I love living here and helping to make our region better.  I want us to always be the best region, with the most job opportunity and the best quality of life not only in Pennsylvania but the East Coast.

One of the challenges with the public sector work I always seem to pick is that the clock is ticking from the day you start. And, while I’m not at the final buzzer in my current position, I have entered the fourth quarter. My term as Lehigh County Executive ends next year. With two kids in college and another one heading there in two years, I don’t have the luxury to wait until the final day. Therefore, I will resign my position effective this July 8. I will start at LVEDC the next day.

I have loved my position with the county.  The executive team we assembled is second to none. We are colleagues and friends. And, the work force and quality of operations in Lehigh County are as good as any I’ve seen. I will always remember my days here and I will miss working directly with the employees of the county.

My work, however, will remain here in the Lehigh Valley, where I was born and want to remain. I look forward to working with both of our counties, all 62 of our municipalities, our other regional organizations and our businesses to market our region and to grow the Lehigh Valley. My mission will be simple. Through partnerships at every level and in every sector, public and private, market our region, create jobs and opportunity and expand the economic base of the Lehigh Valley. I have dozens of ideas on how to do that even better. It’s with a mix of nostalgia and excitement that I close one chapter and open the next. The good news is that the story remains the same and together we have many more chapters to write.
Don Cunningham, Lehigh County Executive



Cunningham delivers 2012 State of the County Address


Cunningham Vetos Countywide Reassessment (PDF)


2012 Budget Address Press Release (PDF)


2012 Budget Address


Financial Outlook Address 2010


Text of Don Cunningham's State of Lehigh County Address


Lehigh County Executive Cunningham Sworn In for Second Term


Lehigh County Executive Cunningham's Oath of Office Address


The Morning Call

Lehigh commissioners approve budget with no tax increase on a split 5-4 vote



Ground Broken On County's First Green Government Building


The Morning Call

New plant to employ 53 in Upper Macungie


The Express Times

Lehigh County officials to celebrate start of construction of green building at Trexler Nature Preserve


County Awards Grant for Regional Fire Training Facility


Lehigh County Executive Don Cunningham Receives Planning Award


Business Wire

CODY Systems and Lehigh County, PA Named Finalist in Government Security News’ Homeland Security Awards



Lehigh County Awards Safe Streets Grants


Penn Environment

Stronger Energy Efficiency Policies in Energy & Climate Bill Would Save PA Families $269 per Year, Create 27,200 Jobs


The Allentown Fiscal

Responsibility Examiner

Profile of Don Cunningham


2010 Budget Address (Full Text)


The Express Times

Bethlehem and Northampton and Lehigh Counties plan energy conservation projects with stimulus money


The Express Times

Lehigh County awards $226,000 to Fountain Hill for Stanley Avenue recreation area



Lehigh County to Continue Repairing Bridges and Preserving Open Space and Farmland

The Morning Call
The Lehigh Valley's Best Mayor in Recent History? Don Cunningham Tops the List

The Philadelphia Inquirer
Most local counties saw
wages go up

York Daily Record
County Dems Host Fall Dinner