Sometimes, the question isn’t, ‘What’s happening?’ In the case of Groton, Connecticut, it’s, ‘What isn’t happening?’ This is a town that has everything going for it, and it is hard to keep up with the rapid progression of projects and undertakings. We spoke with Manager of Economic and Community Development Paige Bronk and Economic Development Specialist Sam Eisenbeiser to find out more.
A Model for Small-Town Development
Humming with Activity
City of Waterloo, ON
The City of Waterloo, Ontario is a hub of activity these days, and it continues to impress as one of North America’s leading innovation cities that brought the likes of the late Stephen Hawking here on numerous occasions. Incubators and research centres are bustling, and this is just the tip of the iceberg as the greater Waterloo Region is one of the fastest-growing regions in Canada.
Trendsetters in the Ice Fishing Industry
Ice Castle Fish Houses
A fish house provides shelter to those who venture out onto frozen lakes to cut holes in the ice and fish in the dead of winter, and there is no better place to manufacture and sell ice houses than Minnesota, nicknamed the ‘Land Of 10,000 Lakes’ (though in truth, there are 11,842).
A Model For Rural Economic Development
Oconto County Economic Development Corporation
The past few years have been quite the journey for the Oconto County Economic Development Corporation of Wisconsin. The organization has fine-tuned its plans for economic health, Fab Labs are starting to make an impact, and the feasibility study has produced some excellent information that is being used so effectively that other similar rural EDCs are taking notice. Once again, we had the privilege of speaking with Oconto County Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Paul W. Ehrfurth.
Expanding in the Right Direction
City of Vacaville, CA
In 2016, I had the pleasure of writing about the City of Vacaville, in California’s Solano County. Ideally situated between Sacramento and San Francisco, the city has found ways to take advantage of its location, benefit from a strong labor pool, and draw from the University of California at Davis and Berkeley.
Business at the Speed of Life
Boone County Economic Development Corporation
West Virginia, in general, and Boone County, in particular, have so much to offer. This land of mountains and natural beauty has amazing opportunities for businesses and thrives on a community involvement rarely seen in other states. We spoke with the Director of Boone County Development Corporation, Kris Mitchell.
The Evolution of GP Transco
Just a little over a year ago, I wrote about a trucking and logistics company from Darien, Illinois, called GP Transco. At the time, GP Transco was implementing its trucking management software OpenRoad TMS, changing its overall look, and dealing with a driver waiting list that is the envy of the industry. Once again, we spoke with Vice President of Marketing and Strategy Sergey Bort and Vice President of HR and Safety Marija Jamontas.
In 2017, when we met Red Mango, the frozen treat and healthy food chain was celebrating its tenth anniversary. We recently caught up with Red Mango’s Chief Marketing Officer and Vice President of Franchise Development Jim Notarnicola, Public Relations Manager Jonathan Reistad, and Director of Marketing and Product Development Nicole Taub, and asked about its progress since then.
Investing in Its Future
Plaquemines Parish, LA
The ability to change course and diversify can make or break an area’s economic outlook. The Plaquemines Parish Government Economic Development and Tourism office has capable individuals at the helm, and this area in Louisiana is certainly not suffering. We spoke with Economic Development and Tourism Director Keith Espadron, Jr., to find out more about what’s driving success and growth in this parish.
Racing Toward Growth
Darlington County, SC
South Carolina’s Darlington County is well-known for its NASCAR track, called the Darlington Raceway – but it has so much more going for it. Back in August of 2015, I spoke with Darlington County Economic Development Partnership Executive Director Frank Willis about the history of the area, how transportation plays a key role in its economic development, and plans to strengthen the manufacturing sector. Once again, we spoke with Frank and found out how plans have developed over the last four years.
80 Years of Excellence in Farming
Eighty years of history is certainly something to brag about – especially since the VanSingel Farms business has been in the same area of Grant, Michigan since its inception. This third-generation, family-run leader in fresh produce has been a staple of quality for decades. This year has been exciting and full of healthy-looking crops, and we spoke with Cal VanSingel, one of the three brothers who own and run the company, to find out more.
New Name, Renewed Purpose
Shawnee Forward Business Alliance
In 2017, Business in Focus spoke with Economic Development Director Tim Burg about Shawnee, the eastern gateway to Oklahoma City. A lot has happened since then, and amongst other things, the development organization name has changed from the Shawnee Economic Development Foundation to the Shawnee Forward Business Alliance. I had the privilege of speaking with one of the new people brought on board: President and Chief Executive Officer Tracy Qualls.
To Alberta and Beyond
Back in 2016, I spoke with Dustin Omeniuk, the son of Dan Omeniuk, founder of Trappers Transport Ltd., the leading provider of temperature-sensitive transportation services in the West. At the time, a switch to electronic logbook devices was underway, and expansion into Alberta was in full swing. We recently caught up with Dustin.
Over 50 Years of Precision Turned Components for Any Application
Since 1965, Swiss Automation has been a supplier of precision turned components, and its work has been rewarded with contracts that extend to the aerospace, defense, medical device, firearms, and hydraulics markets. We spoke with National Sales Director Tom Irvin to find out more.
Smart Growth in Arkansas
City of Conway, AR
Arkansas is a unique place known for its diversified economy; as such, it is somewhat sheltered from the national ebbs and flows. The City of Conway is no different and has managed, through astute city and state planning, to develop into a successful hub of activity with advanced urban planning. Business in Focus spoke with Conway Area Chamber of Commerce Senior Vice President Jamie Gates to find out more.
Where History, Technology, The Arts, and Industry Come Together
The Berkshires area, between Boston and New York in the state of Massachusetts, is steeped in American culture, history, and technology. It has gone through many changes but has always remained relevant, and this famous area is once again reinventing itself and blazing new trails.
Delivering Freshness Every Day
Keany Produce and Gourmet
Established in 1978, Keany Produce and Gourmet is a family-owned produce distributor. Whether it transports fruit, dairy, or vegetables, the utmost care and professionalism go into every effort. The company, celebrating its fortieth anniversary, has recently undergone a warehouse expansion, and is currently experiencing phenomenal growth. We spoke with Social Media and Marketing Coordinator Cassidy Williams.
Wood By-Products – The Way Forward for a Sustainable Future
Cloverdale Fuel is the largest licensed wood-waste processor in southwest British Columbia and works with wood products in every way, including disposal, transport, and sales. It maintains a fleet of thirty-five trucks and trailers to convey wood waste and pick up finished product throughout the lower mainland and Washington State. We spoke with its General Manager Robby Gill, grandson of the company’s founder.
Seeing Waste Differently
Anaergia’s proprietary technologies create renewable energy and fertilizers from municipal, agricultural, and industrial waste, generating new revenue sources for clients while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The Burlington, Ontario-based company has fourteen satellite offices and three manufacturing plants from which it serves nearly two thousand resource recovery customers around the globe.
The Land of Opportunity
Redevelopment and Economic Opportunity Department of Manatee County
In May of 2018, Business in Focus wrote about the Redevelopment and Economic Opportunity Department (REO) of Manatee County in the state of Florida. The focus was on job creation and incentive programs. The county’s population is growing rapidly, and the cost of housing is skyrocketing; however, new development initiatives include affordable housing and plenty of land to work with in and around Fort Manatee. We spoke with REO Director Geri Lopez and Manatee County Economic Development Manager Karen Stewart.
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