Economic Development Team

Megan Baker edit 200x300

Megan Baker, Director

(540) 772-2124
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Megan Baker is the Economic Development Director for Roanoke County. In her role, she oversees business attraction and retention for the county. 

Prior to joining Roanoke County in October 2022, Megan served in a similar role as President of the Fayette County Development Authority in Georgia. She spearheaded development of a 600-acre business park and oversaw many elements of the community’s rebranding process to enhance business attraction efforts.  

Other experience includes positions with the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, Clayton State University, the Georgia Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget, and the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.

She is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) through the International Economic Development Council, a standard of excellence in the profession. She holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from North Carolina State University and a Master of Public Affairs from Indiana University. She is also a graduate of the University of Oklahoma Economic Development Institute.

Dani Poe

Dani Poe, Assistant Director

(540) 772-2070
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Joe Zielinski

Joe Zielinski, Economic Development Specialist

(540) 772-2095
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Joe has been with the Department of Economic Development since November 2000. His primary duties are to research and present information concerning Roanoke County's economy, demographics, and real estate.

Prior to joining Roanoke County's Economic Development department, Joe was a Real Estate Manager with the City of Norfolk's Department of Development. He managed the City of Norfolk's real estate assets for economic development as well as municipal purposes.

Joe is a Virginia native. He is a graduate of Old Dominion University with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Physics and attended graduate school at Virginia Commonwealth University in Urban and Regional Planning. Joe also completed the Virginia Institute for Economic Development's Community Economic Development program at Virginia Tech.     
Karli Foster

Karli Foster, Economic Development Specialist

(540) 772-2185
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The Roanoke County Department of Economic Development offers an extensive array of information and services that are designed to assist international and domestic businesses with establishing new facilities, relocating existing facilities, or expanding current facilities in Roanoke County. The department is actively involved in the following economic development initiatives:

  • Business referral services and related technical assistance
  • Development of the county owned Center for Research and Technology
  • Existing business retention and expansion programs and services
  • New business recruitment and location assistance
  • Real estate consultation services


Local and state organizations that assist the Department of Economic Development include: