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Articles

"Rickey books a blueprint for success"

It’s no surprise Paris native
Rickey Hayes has made it
big in the economic development
world, especially when it
comes to retail development.
After growing up here and
attending schools, Rickey was
in local law enforcement before
moving to the Tulsa, Oklahoma,
area in 2001 to take over as
director of economic development
for the city of Owasso.
Rickey always had a gift for gab,
a helpful trait when building
business relationships. During
his time in Owasso, the city tripled
in revenue and added several
million square feet of commercial
and retail development.
Based on experience gained
in Owasso, Rickey began his
own firm, Retail Attractions,
quickly building a clientele of
cities across the United States
and forging relationships with
some of the largest names in
the retail market. His work has
taken him to more than 450 cities
in 38 states.
In 2010, the Paris Economic
Development Corp. contracted
with Retail Solutions to do a
full market analysis of Paris to
determine the strength of the
Paris trade area and then to
market Paris to private sector
investors.
For the next couple years,
Paris realized somewhat of
a retail establishment boon,
partly due to Rickey’s efforts.
Retailers, such
as Rue 21 and
Maurices moved
to town as did
Wing Stop,
Schlotzsky’s and
Panda Express.
Instead of leaving
town, Pizza
Hut moved to a
new location in
the former Furr’s
Cafeteria on Loop
286.
Paris’ economic engine
changed directions after a couple
of years and became more
focused on maintaining and
attracting industry, the main
purpose of a the corporation’s
status as a Type A sales tax
entity.
By the way, Paris was fortunate
to attract Michael Paris to
head the economic development
group in 2016. Paris, too, has
a long history with economic
development and has a proven
track record here.
As a result of Rickey’s
decades-long experience in
building relationships and
matching nationally recognized
retail outlets with cities
throughout the United States,
Hayes has written the second
of a set of books on retail
development.
“The Devil’s in the Details:
Things That Challenge City
Government and the Language
of Development” is now available
at several outlets. While
“City on a Hill” chronicled
much of Hayes’s earlier work,
this second book gets into
the nitty gritty of economic
development.
“All cities struggle with two
main needs — the creation of
new revenue and improving
quality of life,” Hayes says in
the book. “Retail, when done
right, accomplishes both.”
Both books have received
five-star reviews on Amazon,
which describes the books as
“basic primers for city managers
and city councilors, mayors
and other elected officials on
the principles of retail and economic
development.”
A review states, “If you are
part of a municipality, trying
to make your market grow, this
should be required reading.”
Here’s hoping Rickey’s books
soon can be found in the libraries
of our city leaders.
Both books and information
about Hayes and Retail
Attractions LLC are available
at www.retailattractions.com.
Books can be purchased directly
at amazon.com, by emailing
the office at office@retailattractions.
com or by calling the
office at 918-376-6707.
Mary Madewell is a staff writer for The Paris
News. She can be reached at 903-785-6976 or
emailed at mary.madewell@theparisnews.com.
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