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Legislation that would name the building that houses the NJ Economic Development Authority (EDA) as the “Caren Franzini Memorial Building” would be a fitting tribute to the authority’s longtime leader, The New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA) said today.

The bill, A-4713 (Burzichelli, D-3; Prieto, D-32), was approved by the Assembly today.

“Caren Franzini’s leadership at EDA is a big reason the authority is the dynamic and effective organization it is today,” said NJBIA President and CEO Michele Siekerka. “For nearly 20 years, she guided the agency and helped New Jersey navigate some of the most difficult economic times in history. I cannot think of a more fitting tribute to her than making EDA the ‘Caren Franzini Memorial Building.’”

“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,” Siekerka said. “She was a tireless cheerleader for small business, and her input and advice as a member of NJBIA’s Board of Trustees was invaluable.”

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.”