Alum to Serve as Executive Director of SLU’s Redevelopment Corporation

Brooks Goedeker (MSW ’04), a Saint Louis University alumnus who has worked in the community development field for nearly 15 years, has been selected to lead the redevelopment corporation that SLU formed earlier this year to help revitalize the Midtown area. He begins his new role at the University April 3.

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Brooks Goedeker

 The University established the Midtown Redevelopment Corporation through Chapter 353 of the Revised Statutes of Missouri — known as the “Urban Redevelopment Corporation Law,”  As the area’s master developer, SLU has the authority to grant limited financial incentives and has final say in all new projects.

As executive director of the redevelopment corporation, one of Goedeker’s primary responsibilities will be to bring in other parties to invest in a nearly 400-acre area around and between SLU’s north and south campuses. He’ll also develop land-use plans, review development proposals and work with public officials, among numerous other duties.

“To achieve our strategic goal of becoming a leader in just land use and responsible urban design, it is essential to have someone of Brooks’ experience and expertise to lead our redevelopment corporation,” said Vice President and CFO David Heimburger, noting that the new position was part of an approved reorganization plan for the facilities services division.

“Brooks has spent his career working with others and bringing people together to rebuild and revitalize communities,” Heimburger added. “And his passion for preserving and growing mixed-income neighborhoods aligns perfectly with our strategic priorities and our Catholic, Jesuit mission.”

Prior to coming to SLU, Goedeker served as the executive director of Park Central Development, a nonprofit organization that promotes development in the city’s central corridor, including The Grove and parts of the Central West End. In that role, he oversaw approximately 50 percent — or $2.2 billion — of all construction projects in the city of St. Louis between 2013-2017.

Goedeker also has served as a community development manager with the Washington University Medical Center Redevelopment Corporation where he directed community initiatives related to social and human services, economic development, and public infrastructure, among other areas.

Beyond St. Louis, Goedeker has worked in communities across the country, including Philadelphia, Memphis and Minneapolis, as a project manager with Urban Strategies — a St. Louis-based nonprofit that specializes in human services development and neighborhood revitalization.

In addition to earning his master’s degree in social work at SLU, Goedeker has taught courses in leadership, community development and nonprofit management as an adjunct professor in the School of Social Work. He also has a master’s degree in nonprofit management from Washington University in St. Louis.

Goedeker called his new role at Saint Louis University a “very exciting opportunity,” one that will give him the chance to help connect SLU’s north and south campuses, while making Midtown St. Louis a premier destination for students, faculty, staff, homeowners, business owners and visitors.

“I was born and raised in the City of St. Louis, and I have been passionate about working to improve the city since I was a teenager,” Goedeker said. “I believe this midtown redevelopment effort has tremendous potential, and I am confident that this area will look very different in just five short years.”

In addition to helping SLU achieve one of its strategic priorities, the University’s Jesuit mission was another draw for Goedeker, who is also a graduate of Saint Louis University High School.

“To me, ‘living for others’ has meant helping make communities safer and more productive for every citizen,” he said. “As SLU embarks on its 200-year anniversary, what better way to show that the University is as relevant and innovative as ever than by working to improve the communities around it.”

Goedeker’s efforts to improve St. Louis haven’t gone unnoticed. When St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay announced last year that he would not seek a fifth term, St. Louis Public Radio asked listeners who they thought should succeed him. Goedeker was among the names they put forth, with a listener describing him as “… one of the most responsible and caring persons I have ever met. He is a critical thinker with a superb ability to connect people and lead them to accomplish amazing things…”