Sometimes, I find myself feeling a wee bit guilty. I live in a stunningly beautiful part of the world, get to do work that I enjoy with people who are grounded, visionary, and always inspiring. This became increasingly clear during the public comments period on the 2017 Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS).
To the many people who attended town halls, emailed comments, and posted comments on social media, I say, "Thank you!" Your input helped ensure that the CEDS accurately reflects the strengths, challenges, and opportunities across our region. While space limitation prevented me from including all of the comments in detail, they all informed the five strategic priorities for the EDD moving forward:
- Build Regional Awareness of the EDD
- Identify Priority Regional Projects
- Facilitate Regional Communication
- Facilitate Regional Entrepreneurship & Resilience
- Advance EDD Organizational Development
Though this list is book-ended by EDD organizational concerns, this reflects the board-driven, geographically neutral nature of the organization and the broad territory we serve (11,000 sq. miles). With a small permanent staff, the EDD does its work primarily through efficient leveraging of the membership on strategic projects that support regional outcomes. To that end, we will be reinstating and updating the Regional Priority Project ranking protocol. A new Priority Projects committee will convene later this summer and will be open to participation by active & current EDD members.
The success of the Spring NCW Regional Tourism Convening has led to requests for more topical convenings and workshops that can help stakeholders across the region connect and advance crucial economic development partnerships. With the changing nature of both federal and state investments in our region, those partnerships along with a robust and resilient culture of entrepreneurship and mutual investment, will be instrumental in helping our region continue to grow and stabilize.
Since the last quarter update, the EDD has advanced several projects:
- Regional Tourism. To further understand the impact of the Route 97 tourism partnership with the Thompson-Okanogan Tourism Association, I have begun crafting a digital media marketing plan to pilot with a focus group in August. If you are running an August event or are otherwise a tourism industry stakeholder AND you use Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or direct email marketing, please let me know if you would be interested in being part of the August impact analysis of the Route 97 digital media assets.
- Oroville Public Works Project. The Request for Qualifications (RFQ) seeking architect/engineer submittals for the $1.05M Oroville Railhead Road Realignment Project has been EXTENDED. Submittals will be accepted until July 28th. Check here for more information.
Please let me know if there are any projects you are working on or would like to pursue, with which the EDD could help.
I wish you all and your families a safe, fun and adventurous summer!