FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 1Berkshire Selected as 1 of 65 Inaugural Hosts for National Economic Recovery Corps Program

For additional information, please contact:
Benjamin Lamb
1Berkshire Vice President of Economic Development


1Berkshire Selected as 1 of 65 Inaugural Economic Recovery Corps Fellowship Sites

February 5th, 2024 – Berkshire County, MA – 1Berkshire, in partnership with the Berkshire Innovation Center (BIC), is excited to announce its selection as 1 of only 65 inaugural host locations across the country for the International Economic Development Council (IEDC)’s Economic Recovery Corps (ERC) Fellowship program. This program, supported by the United States Economic Development Administration, assigns and funds fellows to host organizations for 2.5 years of intensive, project-focused work with the goal of making a meaningful and lasting economic impact on the service area. 1Berkshire was selected from over 500 organizations and communities that applied to be a host for this inaugural ERC class, and is 1 of only 4 hosts selected in all of New England.

1Berkshire and the BIC have focused the work of their fellow around several of the goals outlined in their work with the Berkshire Tech Impact Collaborative, a joint endeavor of 1Berkshire, the BIC, and Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Berkshire Community College (OLLI). Since 2020, this trio of organizations has been focusing attention and efforts on better understanding, growing, and supporting the tech and digitally-enabled economy of the region, bolstered with additional support from the Center on Rural Innovation (CORI).

The 1Berkshire fellow, selected from an applicant pool from across the country, is already a familiar face in Berkshire County. Cody Chamberlain of North Adams was selected by the IEDC and matched with 1Berkshire over a five-month application process. With a dynamic background in tech and innovation startups in Boston, youth engagement, customer service, and program design, Cody brings not only skilled capacity, but additional thought leadership to the work of 1Berkshire and the Berkshire Innovation Center.

Cody will be working specifically around a set of functional areas that helps more inclusively grow the creative technology sector of the region by: supporting existing businesses, providing recruitment, technical assistance, and navigation for emergent startups, building partner and resource networks and referral systems, and engaging youth in startup development to foster workforce growth and entrepreneurial skill building for the next generation. Cumulatively this project’s work, branded the “Berkshire Next Generation Entrepreneurial Bridge Initiative,” will engage a breadth of regional and state partners, creating a powerful and sustained coalition. Ben Lamb, 1Berkshire Vice President of Economic Development, notes, “It is incredibly exciting to have been selected as part of this highly-selective program, and it just goes to show that the potential and aspirations we hold here in the Berkshires are second to none.” He adds, “With Cody on board, we now have the deepened capacity to launch these focused initiatives and efforts forward, and make even more effective and inclusive impacts on the region’s innovation economy.”

To learn more about the national announcement of the ERC program, please visit 

About 1Berkshire

1Berkshire is a county-wide organization focused on economic development and promotion of the region as a preferred place to visit, to live, and to grow a business. It provides programs that connect businesses with each other and with potential customers and works to develop future leaders and support entrepreneurs. For more information, visit

About the Economic Recovery Corps

Launched in 2023 through a $30 million cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA), the ERC Fellowship is designed to build capacity in some of the hardest-hit and most economically distressed areas across the United States while cultivating the next generation of economic development leaders. The ERC Program matched 65 Host sites nationwide with a dedicated Fellow, fully funded for 2.5 years, who will act as a field catalyst to build, strengthen, and coordinate relationships and local efforts alongside their host community. The first cohort of Fellows and Host sites represents practitioners and leaders with the passion, skills, and vision to advance new ways of doing economic development. With 65 Fellows at Host Sites located across 44 states and territories, projects represent an exciting cross-section of rural, urban, and tribal communities. Hosts reflect the entire community and economic development field spectrum, from city and county government to regional coalitions, economic development organizations, economic development districts (EDDs), and entrepreneurial support organizations. Learn more at

2024-02-05T10:51:39-05:00February 5th, 2024|Categories: News|Tags: |

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