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Institute for a Secure and Sustainable Environment



CSBD Home >Leadership Summit on Sustainability > 2011 > Panelist Paul J. LaGrange


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Center for Sustainable Business and Development

311 Conference Center Bldg.
Knoxville, TN USA 37996-4134

Phone: 865.974.0505
Fax: 865.974.1838

rchen@utk.edu

Paul J. LaGrange
Assistant Commissioner
Business Development Division
Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development

Paul J. LaGrange serves as Assistant Commissioner of the Business Development Division for the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. In this position, he is responsible for promoting Tennessee as a destination for business investment. The division focuses on identifying and pursuing companies in select key industries that may not currently operate in the state or that may have an interest in either relocating or expanding their operations.

LaGrange offers ECD 20 years of business experience in sales and management. Having a strong reputation for progressive change, his diligence has propelled him up the ranks in his professional endeavors.

Prior to joining ECD, LaGrange was an agent for Strategic Financial Partners in Memphis, Tennessee where his responsibilities included providing upscale, business markets with financial services using insurance and investment products for the creation, preservation, and distribution of wealth to creating business opportunities.

Additionally, LaGrange served as Vice President of Sales and Operations for Vision Dept/Vision America. During his tenure, he managed the sales and operations for 79 licensed optical departments in Montgomery Ward stores, 29 contract retail outlets on military bases and a wholesale manufacturing facility. He also developed a business plan for aggressive expansion of the company’s retail departments resulting in increased productivity and decreased cost of goods.

LaGrange also consistently exhibited success in sales and recruitment having served as the regional sales manager for Omega/Essilor of America in Dallas, Texas, and national account manager for Signet Armorlite in San Marcos, California, where he achieved the distinction of “Sales Representative of the Year.”

He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Lambuth University in Jackson, Tennessee.

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