Okaloosa County

Okaloosa County is home to some of the most visually captivating scenery in the area.  From much coveted sugar white sands and emerald green waters, to rivers, streams and forests – Okaloosa is truly a nature lover’s paradise.  In a community where world-class hospitality and a spirit of innovation go hand-in-hand, businesses enjoy a strong economy rooted in a business-friendly foundation, with property taxes that currently rank among the lowest in all of Florida, and are the lowest per capita of all of the state’s 67 counties.

Okaloosa County is home to Eglin Air Force Base (the world's largest Air Force Base) and Hurlburt Field, where thousands of military spouses, transitioning service members and young retirees eager to remain in the local area provide a ready-made workforce for high-tech employment, including aviation, aerospace and defense-related businesses.

The One Okaloosa EDC partners with County and municipal governments, educational partners and business leaders to support the growth and diversification of the area’s economy.



Top Assets

  • Significant concentration of high-tech employment, particularly in aviation, aerospace, and defense sectors. In total, seven of the world’s Top 10 defense contractors have a presence in Okaloosa County with some, such as Boeing and Lockheed Martin, operating multiple facilities in the county. 
  • Multi-modal transportation network centered around Interstate 10, Florida Gulf & Atlantic Railroad, Bob Sikes Airport (industrial airport featuring an 8,000’ runway), Destin Executive Airport and Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport.
  • Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport continues to be one of the nation’s fastest growing airports, with non-stop service to more than 60 destinations on American Airlines, Delta, Southwest, United and Allegiant.
  • Competitive portfolio of prepared sites including Shoal River Ranch Gigasite (10,500 acres),  Okaloosa Industrial Air Park (Florida First Sites Certified Industrial Park) and the Fort Walton Beach Commerce and Technology Park.
  •  Eglin AFB is responsible for the development, acquisition, testing, and deployment of all air-delivered weapon systems.  In addition, Eglin’s 33rd Fighter Wing is a graduate training and maintenance wing for the F-35 Lightning II.
  • Hurlburt Field is the headquarters of Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) and several other units supporting the special operations mission. 
  • Together, Eglin AFB and Hurlburt Field supply area employers with an annual pipeline of approximately 1,300 highly skilled separating military members each year.
  • Okaloosa County School District has been rated an ‘A’ overall by the Florida Department of Education for 9 of the last 10 years.
  • Proven training and workforce development partnerships with Northwest Florida State College, University of West Florida, Okaloosa Technical College, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Worldwide and the University of Florida Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering. 

One Okaloosa EDC

Nathan Sparks
P O Box 4097
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32549

Okaloosa County Key Data