Economic development in the City of Hutto has been re-energized with new leadership, just as the City ramps up efforts to strategically develop key sectors and properties.
Robert Farley joined Hutto city staff this month as Executive Director of Economic Development. He brings to the Hutto community more than 35 years of success in economic development, corporate real estate, and site selection across several states. Holding a bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University and a Master of Business Administration from The University of Texas (UT) at Austin, Mr. Farley specializes in projects that bring together public and private partners to create lasting solutions. Over the past few years, his economic development efforts led to major corporate locations for Kubota, Paycom, and other companies that together represented over $2 billion in new investment.
Previously, Mr. Farley worked for Deloitte, one of the largest privately owned companies in the country, where he managed real estate for the southeastern United States. He also helped create the first international development efforts for Hillwood Development, a Perot Company. In that capacity, he led international projects in Korea, Thailand, the Philippines, the UAE, and Finland.
In addition to this exciting hire, Mike Arismendez has been appointed to lead the Hutto Economic Development Corporation (EDC) as chairman. He has served on the EDC since September 2020, and he recently filled a Hutto City Council vacancy pending the Place 5 runoff election. Mr. Arismendez has significant experience in city and state government, including serving as mayor of the City of Shallowater, city manager for the City of Littlefield, and legislative director for a former state representative. He received his Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and Business Economics from Texas Tech University, and he studied in the Master of Business Administration program at St. Edward’s University in Austin.
Currently, Mr. Arismendez works as deputy executive director for the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). His experience with TDLR stretches back to former Governor Rick Perry, who initially appointed him as a TDLR commissioner and then as chairman. He was reappointed by Governor Greg Abbott, who also appointed him to complete the Governor’s Executive Development Program at UT. In addition, he has a wealth of experience leading Hispanic community service groups.
These two talented leaders will strengthen the City of Hutto’s commitment to responsible growth across several sectors. For example, the City is working diligently to recruit more sit-down restaurant choices. Hutto is already home to several fast-casual dining options, which were welcome additions but haven’t satisfied all palates. As far as new neighborhoods, the City is focused on diversifying the available housing stock. Until now, new homes in Hutto were mostly being built for first-time buyers. City leaders are working closely with developers to build more “next level” communities for a variety of housing choices.
In the business sector, the City is preparing for the next phase of construction at Innovation Business Park, intended to attract light industrial and manufacturing companies. Ground will break this summer on another corporation that chose to relocate to Hutto in order to accommodate its regional market and distribute products to customers faster.
“We are looking for just the right projects that will be able to scale-up their operations in that location,” Hutto spokeswoman Stacy Schmitt said. “As for our megasite, which features 450 acres on Hwy. 79, we are not limited to manufacturing. The site may include research and development as well as distribution. Ideally, we will find a large anchor corporation, which will provide the needed resources for ancillary business to grow as well.”