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NC Department of Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker recently spoke at AdvantageWest's quarterly meeting of the Economic Developers Advisory Council (EDAC), a group of about 40 economic development professionals and allies from around the 23-county region. The next day, Secretary Decker publicly announced that WNC’s Dr. Pat Mitchell has been selected for the newly created position of Assistant Secretary for Rural Economic Development. Dr. Mitchell recently served as chair of AdvantageWest's EDAC, and was previously County Manager and Director of Economic Development for Ashe County.