Department of Economic Initiatives (DEI)

CONTACT INFORMATION: Our office is open 8:30AM-4:30PM M-F
703-324-5171 TTY 711
12015 Lee Jackson Memorial Highway, Suite 510
Fairfax, VA 22035
Rebecca Moudry
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What We Do

Department of Economic Initiatives (DEI) leverages county resources and develops policy recommendations to foster economic development and position Fairfax to be an economically competitive and prosperous community. It also works closely with small, local businesses to advise and guide them as they grow.


June 8, 2023
  County Seeking Business Coaches and Consultants to Power the Program [Fairfax County, VA June 12] — Fairfax County, renowned for its commitment to community well-being and progress, announces the launch of its groundbreaking initiative, THRIVE. Designed to empower and sustain local businesses. THRIVE represents the county’s continuing commitment to strengthen small businesses and encourage economic growth.  THRIVE is a technical assistance program dedicated to small business growth. Through this program approximately 600 businesses will receive targeted consulting services valued up to $10,000 to help them achieve unique business goals and continue their post-pandemic recovery. Fairfax County's Board of Supervisors allocated $7,000,000 from Fairfax County's share of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) to fund THRIVE. The Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) will serve as the program grant administrator. The first phase of THRIVE begins on June 26, 2023, to recruit business Coaches and Consultants via several RFPs to serve as technical advisors to THRIVE businesses. Links to the RFPs can be found on the THRIVE website. Specifically, the county, through its grant administrator LEDC, is seeking: Small business Coaches who will serve as eligible applicant case managers and help determine the targeted assistance. Business Consultants who will provide eligible applicants with up to $10,000 of technical assistance in their area of expertise. Areas of expertise being sought include: Hiring and Employee Retention Marketing and Brand development  Financial Planning  Online Sales or wWbsite Creation/Improvement  Real Estate, including lease negotiation, etc The second phase of THRIVE, the application period for businesses to receive technical assistance services, will open in mid-fall 2023. Key Dates June 26- August 4, 2023: Business Consulting and Business Coaching RFPs open Early Fall 2023: Business Consultants and Business Coaches Selected Mid-fall October 2023: THRIVE Program Opens to Small Business Applicants For more information on the THRIVE program and how to get involved, please visit Fairfax THRIVE!  Join us in shaping a vibrant future for Fairfax County! _________________________________________________________________ Fairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives (DEI) is a department of Fairfax County Government dedicated to fostering economic growth and positioning Fairfax County to be an economically competitive and prosperous community. DEI leads programs to cultivate a diverse and thriving local business community, facilitate place-led economic development, and strengthen entrepreneurship and the innovation economy. Fairfax County, located in the Commonwealth of Virginia, is a dynamic and diverse community known for its exceptional quality of life, robust economy, and commitment to sustainability. Home to a thriving business community, top-rated schools, and abundant recreational opportunities, Fairfax County has consistently been recognized as one of the best places to live and work in the United States. 

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March 17, 2023
  Fairfax Founders Fund Will Support Innovative and Disruptive Product-Focused Technology Companies Entrepreneurs looking to grow their businesses have a new funding option at their disposal. Fairfax County announced the Fairfax Founders Fund (FFF), a grant and technical assistance program providing funds to early-stage Fairfax County-based startups, will begin accepting applications on April 10. FFF will provide up to $50,000 in capital to help start-ups develop their business and prepare for later-stage investment. It is designed for early stage, high-growth trajectory companies seeking investment to develop. Goals of Founders Fund include expanding competitive technology clusters in Fairfax County and growing innovation-based businesses and jobs.  The county will allocate $1,000,000 from its Economic Opportunity Reserve Fund to capitalize the program. Applications for the first cohort will be accepted from April 10 through May 22. The program will seek companies who can demonstrate their company has innovative technology, a path to commercialization, a clear market opportunity, and development milestones. Recipients will be able to use the resources for prototype or product development, market research, customer acquisition, technology validation, legal costs and/or other approved areas. Importantly, Fairfax County will not take any equity in the companies supported through the fund. Applicants must provide a 50% match, which can be in capital or “sweat equity” and provide progress reports over a 5-year timeframe.   Fairfax County will conduct a broad marketing campaign with a focus on encouraging diverse and disadvantaged groups to apply including women, people of color, people with disabilities, and veterans who are traditionally underrepresented in tech product start-ups. Through Founders Fund the county hopes to foster economic mobility among founders of all backgrounds. Fairfax County is home to 8,800 large and small IT companies in a diversity of sector specializations. Businesses and research teams in Fairfax County are defining the cutting edge. From cloud computing and software development to artificial intelligence and data analytics, the “Silicon Valley of the East” continues to grow with more than 1 in 4 jobs being technology related. More information and applications can be found on the Fairfax County website at search Founders Fund.  Fairfax County has instituted multiple initiatives to help businesses grow and recover. Programs including the Microloan Program, RISE Small Business Grant Program, PIVOT Recovery Grant Program and the Economic Recovery Framework, all spearheaded by the county’s Department of Economic Initiatives, have been foundational building blocks for the county’s economic recovery. Since 2020 the county has targeted more than $70 million in funding for community business support.  By the numbers – small business support snapshot: Small Business Support Grants (and Microloan): $52.6 million Fairfax RISE (Relief Initiatives to Support Employers) grants. Assisted small businesses and nonprofits in Summer 2020. $16.8 million for PIVOT Business Recovery grant program. Focused on the most impacted business sectors. Grants provided in late summer 2020. $1 million Small Business COVID-19 Recovery Microloan Fund. Loans given in Spring 2019 and transitioned to a revolving loan fund in 2021.  Total $70.4 million    _________________ The Fairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives (DEI) leads programs and initiatives to foster economic development and position Fairfax County to be an economically competitive and prosperous community for all. DEI delivers innovative solutions to cultivate a diverse and thriving local business base, facilitate development through public-private partnerships that address strategic priorities, and foster an entrepreneurial and innovative ecosystem within the County and the region, building on competitive economic strengths.  

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October 26, 2022
Fairfax County and Smart City Works announced today that Dynmahex, an AI based platform that helps individuals and communities track and reduce their carbon footprint, was named the winner of the 2022 Pitch and Pilot: Fairfax County Innovation Challenge. The team was chosen after a month-long competition and will be considered for a pilot project to showcase their product in Fairfax County.    The goal of the Challenge was to find, and ultimately pilot, one or more innovative solutions that improve energy efficiency, increase the use of renewable electricity, or accelerate the use of electric vehicles. More than 30 organizations entered. After consideration, five finalists were chosen, and they showcased their innovative ideas at the judging event held at George Mason University’s Innovation Exchange (MIX).  Dynamhex was chosen because its platform can help county owned facilities with carbon accounting and management, and also support residents to understand their individual carbon footprint and incentivize reduction actions.     “We have the tools to get us moving in the right direction to affect climate change. However, we need stronger and less expensive options to help us cross the finish line. This is where things like this “Pitch and Pilot” and companies like Dyamhex come in. It is a way we can nurture innovation and lean into implementing cutting edge solutions to help us meet our ambitious goals while positively impacting economic growth, equity, and sustainability,” noted Rodney Lusk, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.    Fairfax County, George Mason and Smart City Works partnered on the competition, which is part of a broad suite of clean energy strategies and technologies the county is undertaking to meet its ambitious but achievable carbon neutrality goals.  "Innovation challenges are a new and more and more widely used tool for local governments to help rapidly find and implement new technologies to solve some of their most pressing issues.  They are a win-win-win: helping communities, supporting start-ups, and fostering economic development. We are delighted to be partnering with Fairfax County, who has been a pioneer in this space, improving pedestrian safety, addressing COVID challenges, and now helping to decarbonize the local economy,”  Said David Heyman, Founder and President of Smart City Works. “We are excited to partner with Smart City Works and work with this innovative company to bring new solutions to critical challenges. Pitch competitions such as this expand the technology base in Fairfax County, directly benefit county residents, and communities participate in reaching carbon neutrality goals,” said Rebecca Moudry, director of the Fairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives.     About the organizers Fairfax County is the third largest metro region for technology employment; 1 in 4 jobs (25%) are technology related.  These businesses define cutting edge, delivering a full spectrum of high-end services and solutions to government, industry, healthcare, and consumer markets worldwide. Fairfax County is also a recognized leader in community climate planning and action with an ambitious Community-wide Energy and Climate Action Plan currently in the early stages of implementation. The county is addressing climate concerns from a variety of angles with a major focus on building energy use and transportation, which represent 49% and 44% of local greenhouse gas emissions respectively.   The Fairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives supports economic innovation, entrepreneurs and small businesses.     Smart City Works, Inc. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that empowers communities to solve urban challenges and improve economic growth through technology innovation. Working with partners in government, universities, businesses, and nonprofits, we lead the Northern Virginia Smart Region Initiative.  The Smart Region Initiative’s goal is to help establish Northern Virginia as a world center of excellence for urban technology innovation, and a destination for digital technology companies to build and grow their businesses. Smart City Works is a proud winner of and is supported by regional innovation and economic development grants from the U.S. Department of Commerce and GO Virginia.      

Upcoming Events


11:00AM, EVENT DESCRIPTION The Board of Supervisors Economic Initiatives…

9:30AM, EVENT DESCRIPTION The Board of Supervisors Economic Initiatives…

7:00PM, September 21- workgroup Young Adults Advisory Council Web Page  

7:00PM, Young Adults Advisory Council July 20, 2023 Agenda Young Adults…

7:00PM, November 16 - workgroup Young Adults Advisory Council Web Page  

7:00PM, Young Adults Advisory Council December 21, 2023 Agenda Young Adults…
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