Corrie Bobe is Danville native and a product of the Danville Public School System. After majoring in Marketing Management at Virginia Tech, her job took her to Northern Virginia and then San Francisco for a brief stint. Around ten years ago, Bobe decided to move back to the east coast to be closer to her family. What initially began as a short break in Danville, quickly turned into finding a fulfilling career and settling down in her hometown.

Bobe joined the Danville Office of Economic Development in 2009 and now serve as its Assistant Director. She oversees redevelopment efforts within the River District, along with assisting in the recruitment and retention of industrial- and technology-based businesses.

Outside of work responsibilities, Bobe serves the region through a number of civic and professional organizations such as the West Piedmont Workforce Investment Board, Danville Science Center, Inc., Virginia Economic Developers Association, and Danville Family YMCA.

Bobe, along with her husband, Iulian, two years ago and two wonderful step-sons are proud residents of the Old West End and enjoy seeing the transformation taking place within this historic district.

We caught up with Corrie to discuss young professionalism.

SM: What is professionalism to you?

CB: Professionalism encompasses a number of qualities in an individual. I believe that someone who is classified as being a professional has dedicated time in gaining a deep knowledge of their field and has committed to continuously improving upon this knowledge-base or skill. When embarking upon a new project or strategy, they should be able to successfully develop this plan and implement it accordingly.
Should something go awry during the process, they should be able to communicate the issues and work diligently to resolve the problem. Professionals are good communicators and dedicate time and effort in setting (and managing) expectations. In addition, professionals understand that a first impression tends to be a lasting impression. One’s image and conduct are also very important.

SM: Who or what inspires you and why?

CB: Whether in my hometown or traveling abroad, I pull inspiration from conversations with individuals. Hearing their life’s stories, learning about their culture and beliefs, and understanding their challenges and successes really push me to step back and evaluate my personal and professional life.

My professional motivation is also stemmed from the younger generation of my family. I will be the first to admit that I do not understand half of the acronyms they use, most of the technology they obsess over, and the emotions they display. However, my interactions with them have challenged me to think outside of the box and create opportunities to help connect this generation to our region now and in the future. My wish is that they have ample reasons to stay in or move back to their home community as adults and become active participants in moving this region forward.

I believe that one can find inspiration through multiple actions or interactions. You just have to be open to that moment of insight and understanding.

SM: What do you admire about your community?

CB: I admire the tenacity of this community. Instead of sulking about the loss of its traditional industries, a decision was made to reinvent itself and focus on making strategic investments in areas that would make it more attractive to businesses and families. Over the past seven years, these investments have turned into successes. Investments in workforce training programs have garnered attention from international industries and our River District is now classified as a model for downtown redevelopment.

I believe smaller communities provide a unique opportunity for its residents to play an active role in shaping its future. To have this level of input and participation, especially as a young professional, is something that few communities can offer.

This is truly an exciting time to live in Danville and to be part of the change that is taking place.

SM: What do you like to when you’re not working?

CB: I tend keep a pretty active work and volunteer schedule; however, when there is a break, I enjoy traveling, experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen, reading, and tackling property renovation projects. I also enjoy taking long walks outdoors when I need to recharge my batteries.

SM: What’s the best piece of advice you have for aspiring young professionals?

CB: I once heard someone say that the true meaning of being successful is to be able to share success stories across multiple areas of your life. Ensuring that you maintain a healthy work-life balance is very important to your overall health, happiness, and productivity level.

SM: Where do you see yourself in five years?

CB: My overarching life goals are to be happy, healthy, and fulfilled personally and professionally. From a professional standpoint, I hope to progress into the next level of my career in economic development. In my personal life, I hope to be able to fluently communicate in Romanian with my in-laws and successfully grow hydrangeas in my garden.

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