I was born, raised, and continue to live as the seventh generation on our small family farm in the once-booming crossroads community of Eagle Rock, North Carolina. After narrowly saving our family farm from development when I was in highschool, I began representing my family at any local government meeting where the use of our farm was at issue.  The rest, as they say, is history.

Growing up in farm country, we made our way by relying on principles of hard work and integrity.  My mother stressed two points emphatically; the importance of self reliance and that every choice we make affects the rest of our lives. These principles apply equally to the future endurance of our hometowns. 

Successful community economic development is a lot like farm living. To do it right you’ve got to find the proper balance between the past and progress, without forgetting who you are or where you came from (or as my grandmother would say “ getting too big for your britches”).

Here at  Sanford Holshouser, I work  throughout North Carolina (from “Manteo to Murphy,” as the saying goes!) to help communities build on their past to create sustainable futures through smart community economic development. I work closely with clients to implement creative solutions that match both public- and private-sector goals, while balancing legal requirements and risk tolerances. Through these experiences, I’ve become well-versed in both the legal and practical issues related to project finance, development incentives, local government representation, contract negotiation, and zoning and land use. I enjoy working with both public and private clients to identify opportunities that build common ground between commercial success and public policy objectives.  I’ve learned that successful projects don’t happen by accident. Projects are dynamic, requiring a team of qualified professionals and stakeholders, and I’m very interested in lending my skills to build forward-facing, sustainable projects everyone can be proud of.

 I am currently serving on the Economic Development Committee for the Town of Wendell and previously served as chairman of the Planning Board for the Town of Wendell.  I’m active in the North Carolina Bar Association’s Zoning, Planning, and Land Use Section, having served as a member on the Section’s Council, and as a co-chair of the Section’s Communication Committee.

 I’ve made my home on the farm, renovating my grandparent’s turn-of-the century farmhouse. My back porch was once home to Eagle Rock’s last operating post office. When I’m not in the kitchen experimenting on my AGA (so, most of the time), you can find me hunting for arrowheads in the field, working as the unofficial (and unpaid!) family historian, or collecting antiques.




North Carolina Main Street Conference                                                              2019

▪       “Is Your Downtown Getting You Down? The Empire Redevelopment Story”


North Carolina City & County Managers Association                                         2019

▪       “The Missing Link: Affordable Housing in Your Community”


Women’s Economic Development Network                                                         2019

▪       “The Inside Track with Millennials in Your Organization Panel”


North Carolina City & County Managers Association                                         2018

“Is Your Downtown Getting You Down?”



  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, JD
  • Meredith College, BA



  • North Carolina


Phone: 919-524-2096