A chance meeting nine years ago led Tara Bradshaw to relocate to Dublin, Georgia. As the Special Events & Marketing Coordinator with SAM Shortline Excursion Train, Tara met her husband, Matthew Bradshaw, on one of the train's trips to Dublin. Her heart found a home here that day, and for the past 5 years as the Main Street Dublin Director, she has worked to ensure that both locals and visitors alike fall head over heels for downtown Dublin.
Tara Bradshaw - appointed Executive Director for the Dublin Downtown Development Authority during the organization's December 9th meeting - is a familiar face around downtown. Throughout her tenure as the Main Street Dublin Director, her work entailed creating and organizing many of downtown's banner events, managing four landmark facilities, promoting historic preservation, and working tirelessly to recruit and retain downtown businesses. She also oversaw the administrative activities for the DDA and assisted in managing downtown investment projects.
Dublin DDA's new Executive Director brings with her over ten years experience in community development along with a passion for making downtown Dublin, Georgia a premier destination for business and culture.
"When I took my first position with DDA, I remember telling my husband that this wouldn't just be a 'job', it would be a lifestyle. I have strived the last five years to be the best downtown manager Dublin could ask for and to be a champion for downtown businesses, historic preservation, and cultural events. I look forward to continuing the momentum that our community has worked so hard to create," says Bradshaw.
Under the leadership of Joshua Kight as Executive Director and Tara Bradshaw as Main Street Dublin Director over the last five years, downtown Dublin experienced a tremendous revival. "The passion and perseverance our local leadership has shown in their commitment to the come back of our downtown is incredible, and I consider myself fortunate to have a front row seat," says Bradshaw. "We've seen major development projects like the Bicentennial Plaza, the Skyscraper, parking upgrades, and a strong mix of private investment over the last few years. Our officials and our DDA get it; they get that public investment in our downtown through buildings, public spaces, and events spurs private investment and cultural interest. "
As for the future of downtown Dublin, Bradshaw is looking forward to creating new ways to engage developers, entrepreneurs, and artists to continue building an interesting and vibrant group of downtown businesses and events. "The sky's the limit for downtown Dublin. We have come a long way from shuttered buildings and empty spaces, but there is work to still be done."
"Over the next several years, you will see a focus on building our business mix, well underway with the opening of new retail like Ambree Jameson, Mint Boutique, and several others. You'll also hear a lot about residential space in downtown. We'll be looking at ways that we can encourage and potentially incentivize downtown residential development," says Bradshaw.
"My dream for Dublin is a vibrant, entrepreneur-friendly downtown that is completely connected and walkable and full of interesting places and spaces. I am so excited about what the future holds for our downtown, and I'm thrilled to be a part of this team."