L.A.’s economy has a new voice.

The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. is set to announce today that it has hired real estate economist Robert Kleinhenz as its new chief economist. He replaces Nancy Sidhu, who retired last month to deal with a family health situation.

The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. is a private non-profit that serves as the region’s chief economic development organization.

Kleinhenz officially joined the LAEDC this week. As chief economist at the Kyser Center for Economic Research, Kleinhenz will be in charge of economic forecasts for the Los Angeles area and will serve as the chief spokesperson on local economic issues.

Kleinhenz, 53, had been deputy economist with the California Association of Realtors. He managed the economics department, which compiles housing market data and conducts consumer research. Prior to joining the Realtor association, Kleinhenz taught economics for 15 years, most recently at California State University Fullerton.

Sidhu, 70, served for 18 months as chief economist, replacing the late Jack Kyser, who left in mid-2010 and died a few months later. Kyser had served 19 years as the LAEDC’s first chief economist.

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