San Marcos Wins International Award for Economic Development Excellence


The International Economic Development Council (IEDC)—the world’s largest organization of its kind—has honored the City of San Marcos with a prestigious award for a marketing brochure it created to attract more businesses.

Economic Development Manager Tess Sangster accepted a prestigious award for a marketing brochure International Economic Development Council on Wednesday, Oct. 3.

The City won a Bronze Excellence in Economic Development Award for its Discover San Marcos brochure, which has helped boost business inventory by 9 percent from 2015 to 2017. The brochure also aims to entice more tenants to lease office space at City Hall—a big part of the City’s real estate portfolio, which collectively earns $10 million annually for the general fund. So far, the brochure has helped increase occupancy rates at City Hall by five percent from 2015 to 2017.

“This brochure has improved our business outreach in tangible ways,” said Economic Development Manager Tess Sangster,

Who formally accepted the award on Oct. 2 during IEDC’s annual conference in Atlanta, GA. “The recognition underscores our entrepreneurial spirit, which we have because we largely operate like a business, are we’re proud of that.”

In fact, the City’s charter—a voter-approved guiding document—says staff should follow a business-like mentality and embrace ways to grow revenue, such as economic development. In 2015 economic development was named a top priority, spurred largely by an increasingly competitive business landscape.

“Though economic development is relatively new territory for San Marcos, we’ve made significant strides,” said Sangster, pointing out that this win comes on the heels of another state award for economic development excellence.

Working under the City’s brand tagline ‘Discover San Marcos,’ Sangster worked with the Communications Officer to develop a brochure that gives a glimpse of the booming business scene—and invites readers to see themselves thriving in it, either as a tenant of the City or as one of its businesses.

It calls out that San Marcos contributes $7.9 billion annual GDP to the regional economy; and that as North County’s education hub, the City’s academic institutions serve more higher education students than any other community in San Diego County.

“This international award rightfully puts San Marcos on the map as a top community for commerce,” Sangster said. “We look forward to keeping San Marcos on the leading edge of economic development.”

For more information about IEDC, please visit For more information about the City’s economic development division, please contact Economic Development Manager Tess Sangster at or (760) 744-1050, ext. 3120.


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