Last week, the Florida Economic Development Council and its member organizations celebrated the first Florida Economic Development Week. The goal was to showcase the many forms of business assistance that economic developers and their partners provide beyond those headline-grabbing corporate relocations. This assistance includes everything from helping growing local companies find and screen talent, secure training grants to upskill their workforce, or find new properties to accommodate their expansions. In fact, services that benefit local firms comprise the majority of the work performed at the Tampa Hillsborough EDC – and the same holds true for most economic development organizations in our state.
As you will see in this edition of the newsletter, the Tampa Hillsborough EDC took advantage of the Week to highlight what’s best about our community to national media and on our social media channels. Many of you shared these stories with your networks, and for that we say thank you. Every positive story you share about how your business is succeeding in Hillsborough County, or why you chose to move here to build your career, or why you intend to stay and be a part of our future success helps Tampa’s star rise even higher.
At a time when the Amazon HQ2 drama is playing out in national news, it’s easy to forget that economic development is about much more than mega deals. It’s about enhancing economic prosperity for everyone – through higher-wage job creation, sound investments in infrastructure, facilities, and education, and cooperation among all the players in our business, government, and higher education ecosystem. That’s the kind of important, foundational work that we do every day – and that will determine whether or not we can compete in tomorrow’s global marketplace.
Craig J. Richard, CEcD, FM
PRESIDENT AND CEO
TAMPA HILLSBOROUGH ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION