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Legislation that would name the building that houses the NJ Economic Development Authority (EDA) as the “Caren Franzini Memorial Building” was approved today by the Assembly Appropriations Committee. The New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA) supports the bill, A-4713 (Burzichelli, D-3; Prieto, D-32).

“For nearly 20 years, Caren Franzini was executive director of the EDA and her leadership is a big reason the authority is such a dynamic and effective organization,” said NJBIA President and CEO Michele Siekerka. “Her legacy at EDA is already well-known by those who are familiar with the work she did there, so it is only fitting that she be memorialized in this way.

“NJBIA had the benefit of Caren Franzini’s leadership as a trustee on our Board before her passing in January,” Siekerka said. “Throughout the nearly 20 years I knew Caren, I found her to be  a warm, caring person who took her responsibilities on behalf of business very seriously.”

Franzini led EDA from January 1994 until October 2012 and then began her own business, Franzini Consulting, LLC. During her tenure, EDA fostered innovation through the Technology Centre of New Jersey, the Commercialization Center for Innovative Technology, and the Waterfront Technology Center at Camden, and had a large role in the resurgence of the cities of Camden, Trenton, and Newark.

“Caren was always a cheerleader for small businesses, and her input and advice to NJBIA was always a great help,” Siekerka said.  “With this bill, that commitment will be forever remembered.”