Belkys Perez Leads the City’s Economic Development

Economic Development Director, City of Coral Gables

Belkys Perez joined the City of Coral Gables in 2006, following her career as an Emmy-nominated news reporter at several television news stations in Florida. She also assisted the City of Miami Beach’s government television channel in delivering strategic messaging. 

Since 2006, Perez has worked in the city’s economic development department, initially as a marketing and events specialist. Among other projects, she oversaw the marketing and public relations efforts for the Miracle Mile and Giralda Plaza Streetscape Project, a multi-million dollar construction project which included developing media, community, and business outreach. She also managed the year-long celebration marking the City’s 90th anniversary to increase awareness and appreciation of Coral Gables.

Latest Achievement

After serving since last August as the acting director of the Economic Development Department, her confirmation to the role of director was recently made official by the City Commission. Prior to accepting this position, Perez was highly active as the assistant director, developing programs to help small businesses in Coral Gables and helping craft and implement the city’s economic development strategies for business recruitment, retention, expansion, and engagement.

What She Says

“There are four things I am going to focus on this fiscal year [which ends Sept. 30],” says Perez. “The first is to bring more international and foreign companies here. We believe that large corporations and multinationals have a multiplier effect, that every job they bring in adds two more jobs in support capacities.”

The second thing, says Perez, is to make sure that we have a clean and inviting downtown “with the amenities and events that attract the business [employees] so they will spend more time here.” The third thing is to focus on the South Gables to “make sure it feels like Coral Gables and feels connected” with the rest of the city. “Fourth,” she says, “is to emphasize that we have a smart city, and make sure we leverage that for recruiting tech companies.”