As an Associate Director for Economic Development and Innovation, Ben Taylor develops and executes strategic initiatives for the Vice President for Economic Development and Innovation (VPEDI) office. He manages a comprehensive, strategic communications plan that tells the story of the University of Illinois System’s innovation pipeline and economic development efforts, and also acts as the office’s liaison between Illinois-based corporate, government, community, and university stakeholders to enhance connections, drive economic development and foster entrepreneurship.
Previously, Ben was an Advanced Media Specialist in the College of Applied Health Sciences, where he executed digital and social media strategies that advanced the college’s reputation and recruitment efforts. Before that, Ben was a Media Communications Specialist in the College of Engineering. There, he developed and executed marketing strategies for the college’s graduate and online programs, while also finding creative ways to tell the college’s story through digital and print media.
Before his stint in the College of Engineering, Ben was an Assistant Director of Athletics Communication where he coordinated publicity for a number of Fighting Illini teams. He worked with the 2008 Rose Bowl football team, the 2013 NCAA runner-up men’s golf team and the 2011 baseball squad that reached the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 11 years.
Ben is an alumnus of the University of Illinois, with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s degree in recreation, sport and tourism.