Matheny Receives Community Development Institute Certificate

Gia Matheny, Director of Community and Economic Development, was among 39 people who received graduation certificates during the 36e Annual Community Development Institute (CDI) at the University of Central Arkansas on August 5. Matheny has completed all three years of the Institute’s study program.

Gia Matheny, Community Development Manager of Hernando (photo courtesy)

CDI trains community leaders and economic development professionals on how to strengthen their local economies and build communities. This is achieved by developing participants’ ability to identify community assets, set goals, encourage collaboration and partnerships with stakeholders, and bring communities, organizations and businesses together to respond to a wide range economic and quality of life issues.

The full CDI experience is a three-year program, with one training week per year. Participants follow the cohort studies program and are exposed to a comprehensive and applied approach to community and economic development.

UCA is home to the Community Development Institute, which began in 1987 in partnership with Entergy, Southwestern Bell and ARKLA. Since then, CDIs have been established in Texas, Alabama, Idaho and Illinois, and a national governance and certification body, the Community Development Council, has been created.

For more information about the CDI, visit

Norma P. Rex