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story.lead_photo.caption Rob Dixon was named director of Missouri's Department of Economic Development on Friday, June 2, 2017.

After four years at the helm, Department of Economic Development Director Rob Dixon is leaving the department Oct. 22 for a position with Ameren Missouri.

Dixon has served as DED director since July 2017 and has helped develop numerous initiatives and economic development projects.

"Rob did a great job for the people of Missouri during his tenure, and we will certainly miss his leadership," said Maggie Kost, DED deputy director. "We're going to carry forward, and I know that we've got a great team in place here at the department that is going to do great work in the future."

Under his leadership, the department rolled out the Missouri One Start program, which provides pre-employment services from screening and recruitment to job-specific training.

Dixon also oversaw the development of Missouri's Best in Midwest initiative and multiple projects, such as General Motors' expansion in Wentzville, Nucor's steel mill in Sedalia and the United States Department of Agriculture headquarters in Kansas City.

"We are excited for Director Dixon as he enters this next chapter of his career," Gov. Mike Parson said. "Rob has built an incredibly strong team at DED, and while we will miss his leadership and common sense approach, we know DED's passionate and dedicated team members will help ensure a smooth transition and continue serving Missourians without delay."

"Rob's love for this state has helped bring greater opportunity to thousands of Missourians, and Teresa and I thank him for his service and wish him the best in his new role and all that comes next," Parson continued.

Dixon begins his role as Ameren's director of community and economic development Oct. 29.

In that role, he will oversee the planning and implementation of the utility company's strategies for promoting community and economic growth within its service area of 64 counties and 500 communities.

"Missouri is a great place to do business, and I'm excited to continue to help move our state forward in the years ahead in my new role with Ameren Missouri," Dixon said in a news release. "I know the high commitment level of Ameren Missouri to attracting and retaining jobs in our state, and I'm humbled and honored to join the exceptional team focused on community and economic development."

Parson is considering candidates for the interim director position until he appoints a permanent replacement. The acting director will be announced before Dixon's final day.

In the meantime, Kost said the department's work will continue.

"We have an incredibly strong team here at DED, and we'll continue to serve the people of Missouri with passion and dedication, and certainly not miss a beat even though Director Dixon is leaving and certainly will be missed," Kost said.

This article was edited at 10:33 a.m. Sept. 29, 2021, to correct Maggie Kost's title. She is the deputy director of the Department of Economic Development.

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