Research Triangle Regional Partnership Names Ryan Combs as its Executive Director

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The Research Triangle Regional Partnership (RTRP) today announced the appointment of Ryan Combs as its executive director, effective February 20, 2017. Mr. Combs joins RTRP from the North Carolina Department of Public Safety where he served as its legislative director for the past four years. Mr. Combs will report to the executive committee of the RTRP Board of Directors.

As executive director of RTRP, Mr. Combs will be responsible for managing all of the organization’s activities and affairs and working with economic development organizations in each of the RTRP’s member counties to identify and leverage common opportunities for marketing the competitive advantages of the region. Mr. Combs will also work with the RTRP Board of Directors to execute the strategic business plan created by the organization’s volunteer and professional leadership during the past six months.

Mr. Combs previously served for eight years on United States Senator Richard Burr’s staff and worked at The White House as a Staff Assistant in the Executive Office of the President. He is a Raleigh native and a graduate of Broughton High School and North Carolina State University.

“Ryan possesses the strong communications skills, leadership and confidence that RTRP requires to effectively convey the strengths of the region to potential investors in the market,” said John Kane, CEO of Kane Realty and RTRP Board Chairman. “Ryan’s combination of hands-on skills and strategic thinking, which he has honed through service to leaders in our State and our nation’s highest office, uniquely equip him with fresh perspective that he will bring to RTRP, its members and the Triangle region. I and the RTRP Board are very excited to begin working with Ryan.”

Harvey Schmitt, formerly President of the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce, has been serving as a consultant to RTRP during the executive search period. He will continue to provide interim consulting services as directed by Mr. Combs that include support to the RTRP’s annual State of the Region Conference which is set for May 11, 2017 at Meymandi Hall in Raleigh.

About the Research Triangle Regional Partnership

The Research Triangle Regional Partnership (RTRP) is an 11 county economic development alliance focused on marketing the competitive advantages of the Research Triangle Region to generate economic growth. For more information, visit or follow @TriangleRegion.