Michael Edwards, 53, will join the Chicago Loop Alliance as executive director. He will be responsible for the operation and execution of all programs and internal operations at CLA, providing strategic leadership and advancing CLA's mission to make the Loop Chicago's top destination for business, retail, tourism, entertainment and education. He will oversee CLA's annual budget of $2.7 million and a staff of seven. Edwards most recently served as an economic consultant for the Mayor's Office of the City of Spokane, Washington. His nearly three decades of economic development experience includes six years as president and CEO of the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership and seven years as president and CEO of the Downtown Spokane Partnership. He holds a Master's degree from the University of Pittsburgh.