My Perspective – Letters to the Rockford Region
Leading in Job Growth
As of the end of September, 2016, the Rockford metropolitan area leads the State of Illinois in job growth according to the latest unemployment report issued by the Illinois Department of Employment Security. The Rockford MSA led the State in job growth at the end of August, 2016 as well.
READ MORE >>>
The RAEDC and the Rockford Region
The RAEDC, as the Economic Development Agency for the region is also the data collection agency on all new capital investment in the area, retained and created jobs, and new or renovated space. As we enter into our Rockforward20/20 strategic plan, we will be informing all of you on project wins for our region as well as projects that we are working on with our various regional partners.
Regional Impact Measurements
These figures represent the collective successes during the new Rockforward20/20 strategic plan. The plan began in January 2016 and will continue through December 2020.
The results shown below are for the first 11 months of the 60 month Rockfordward20/20 strategic plan.
There were no projects closed as a win during the month of November.
Welcome Gerald “Jerry” Sagona
The RAEDC welcomes Jerry Sagona to the team as the Vice President of National Business Development. Jerry manages business attraction outreach efforts and area marketing projects.
David Storch of AAR Corp Speaks to nearly 800 attendees at RAEDC’s 2016 Annual Meeting
David Storch of AAR Corp presented the Annual Meeting’s keynote address. During his speech, he reflected how the community came together to ensure the maintenance, repair, and overhaul facility was completed on time despite possible funding challenges.
Definition of Leadership May be Different
by Jimsi Kuborn, VP of Investor Relations
What do you see in a leader, who is a leader in your life? We all know those unsung heroes, the ones who inspire us and draw us in to be part of their vision. Leadership does not come from your title or tenure.
RVC opens Woodward Technology Center
Rock Valley College’s Woodward Technology Center is now open for students. It’s a state-of-the-art opportunity for local college students to get the skills they need to launch an engineering career in Rockford.
Start-up plastics manufacturer to bring new jobs to Rockford
Under a proposed agreement with the city, Delicate Plastics would get $150,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds to defray the cost of classroom and job training for the new employees. In exchange, at least 51 percent of the positions will go to low and moderate-income employees who may not have previous work experience and who could have criminal records.
College of Medicine at Rockford Forms International Educational Partnership with Swedish University in the County of Skaraborg
The partnership is focused on inter-professional exchanges and allows for exchange of faculty members, students, residents/fellows, and academic materials as well as joint research activities and educational programs.
Regional Good News
Rockford Area REALTORS Contribute to New Capital Program
Rockford Area REALTORS contribute $50,000 for the naming rights to the Northern Illinois University (NIU) / Rock Valley College (RVC) Engineering Program faculty office suites.
Rockford Ranks 5th in Best Places to Spend the Holidays
OnlyInYourState.com ranked Rockford 5th in their top 10 best places in Illinois to visit during the holiday season. Taking into account the culturally diverse background of the region, the multicultural children’s choir, the Victorian Holiday Celebration, and the 12 Bars of Christmas Pub Crawl the region is a great place for friends and family to visit.
Fred VanVleet Named as First Sports Brand Ambassador with RACVB
Now RACVB is taking sports tourism to new heights with the addition of local legend and NBA rookie Fred VanVleet as the organization’s first-ever Sports Tourism Ambassador. VanVleet will be the face of the RACVB’s new Bring Your Game 2 Rockford marketing campaign.
Innovation Tuesday: Honoring Your Business Network – Jan 10, 5:30 – 7:30pm
Networking is critical to our business and career success but so many people avoid it-to their peril. Author Vickie Austin will share steps that will help you from the moment you create your intention, whether it’s a career transition or building your business, to the act of acknowledging those who have helped you along the way.
1 Million Cups – Wednesdays, 9 – 11am
Entrepreneurs present their startup companies and learn how the community can help their business flourish. These meetings are held on a weekly basis.
Rockforward20/20 represents a bold vision for our future, this aggressive plan will cultivate opportunities to create and retain over 10,000 jobs and significantly increase capital investment in the region.
The RAEDC often works behind the scenes due to the confidential nature of business projects. Plus, big deals take time: The average time from start to completion on the 24 project wins in 2015 was 329 days.
We are committed to persistence and continuity in our work: We market the Rockford Region to the world, influencing companies to locate or expand here. We support and promote growth within targeted industries through regional public-private collaboration. We assist prospective and existing companies by connecting them to resources for workforce development, available buildings, supply chain partners, incentives and more.
Together, we will continue the momentum into 2016 for an even stronger, more sustainable economy. Together, we will Trailblaze, Inspire Action, Align, Seed and Serve!
Michael Nicholas, President
ABOUT THE RAEDC
The role of the Rockford Area Economic Development Council (RAEDC) is to collaborate with regional stakeholders to cultivate opportunities for primary job growth that increase the economic well-being of our region. The RAEDC markets the region to attract new capital investment, while assisting existing business with resources for sustainable growth. The RAEDC works closely with many partners to improve the competitiveness of the region by taking what it learns from the region’s employers and engaging the community in the daily work of economic development. As the economic development organization for the region, the RAEDC also serves as the area’s data collection agency on all new capital investment, retained and created quality jobs, and renovated commercial/industrial space.