New & Notables: Davon Barbour
President & CEO | Downtown Development District (DDD)
Six months ago, Davon Barbour left California to try to resurrect New Orleans as one of the best cities in the nation.
With a professional background in economic and community development and retail attraction and retention, Barbour assumed leadership of the Downtown Development District (DDD), a business improvement district that provides enhanced economic development, cleaning and safety services in the roughly 160-block area bounded by Iberville Street, the Pontchartrain Expressway, Claiborne Avenue and the Mississippi River.
“Our goal is to really carry a world-class downtown that leverages the assets within the district to create prosperity for all New Orleanians,” Barbour said.
Cultivating economic development in the emerging biosciences is a major goal of his.
“We think there’s a real opportunity to grow our economy by embracing industries of the future, particularly health care and life sciences technology, so we’re diverting many of our resources to ensure the success of the biomedical district,” he said. “The redevelopment of the Charity Hospital site will bring new life into downtown. The expansion of Tulane University through various investments, notably its new innovation center, will cultivate entrepreneurship, celebrate innovation and help cultivate jobs.”
Barbour’s goal will be achieved, he said, when downtown is once again crowded day and night.
“Success, at the end of the day, is when someone is saying, ‘Hey, I opened a business in New Orleans and the DDD, the city, they were great to work with. You need to open your business here.’ Or as a resident, just saying ‘I received stellar services. The DDD, they’re an incredible partner. You need to live in downtown.’ That’s success for me.”