Steven Osborne has worked for the city of Concord for 21 years but still has many plans for the community.
As the deputy director of business and neighborhood services, Steve coordinates the efforts of four divisions: planning, economic development, community development and geographic information systems.
"The greatest challenge is keeping up with the logistics of a diverse department," Osborne said. "It keeps the job interesting because you wear many different hats."
Osborne moved to Concord from Asheboro in 1989 to pursue a master's degree in public administration at UNC Charlotte.
Never miss a local story.
"When I moved to Concord in 1989, the city was in transition from a traditional textile economy to a service and skilled economy," he said. "Concord has been fortunate to have had good public and private leadership to position the city for the new economy and take advantage of our location."
Over the years, Osborne has not only seen Concord grow, but he has also been a part of the city's development through his two decades of service.
"The population when I moved here was just over 25,000 and now it is around 80,000," Osborne said. "The growth has been tremendous. When I first moved to Concord you had to go to Charlotte for almost everything - food, entertainment, sports. Now we can find most of these amenities in Concord."
But according to Osborne, it is not the amenities that make Concord unique, it is the people.
"Concord has become a real neat combination of residents from all over blending with those who were born and raised here," he said.
Osborne is working on several innovative projects for the city that he hopes will increase the tax base and provide jobs.
"The city council just approved three incentive projects in Concord, involving the redevelopment of two downtown properties and the establishment of a solar manufacturing company," he said. "All three are good investments."
He is also particularly excited about a project that will convert the city's former electric operations site on Kerr Street to an artisans' center. Last spring, the city leased the space to two Charlotte artists, Patrick Glover and Ross Wilbanks. The artists are spreading the word about the new space to other local artists in an effort to draw their talent to the unique spot.
"The next phase of studio space is already spoken for and the work to make space available will not be complete until spring," Osborne said. "It will take several years to fully redevelop the site, but the potential for the artist and the community is unbelievable."
Another project Osborne is working on aims to bring a $5 million senior housing facility to the community. A private developer has already committed to build the facility, and construction is expected to begin in early 2010.
Despite Osborne's workload in the office, he tries to spend his free time outdoors.
"I am mainly in the office during work so I really value time that I can spend outdoors," he said. "I like to fish, hunt, hike, golf, scuba dive."
A family man, Osborne combines the love of his family and the love of his hobbies.
"I have also been a girls' softball coach for nine years and a girls' basketball coach for two years," he said. "Both of my daughters are very involved in athletics."
He and his wife, Sara, have been married for 16 years. Sara works for the Cabarrus school system as a psychologist. Their daughters are Bailey, 12, and Kendall, 9.