Community and Economic Development Initiative Launches Next Five-Year Strategy
(GWINNETT- METRO ATLANTA) December 2, 2011– Today, Partnership Gwinnett – the internationally award-winning community and economic development initiative for Metro Atlanta’s largest local community – unveiled its strategic plan to bring more jobs to Gwinnett over the next five years. Gwinnett has led the core metro counties with the lowest unemployment rate for over two years, and continues to proactively seek out jobs and opportunities for wealth creation in the 805,000-person county.
“The past five years has brought a great deal of successes to Gwinnett in spite of the new economic climate,” said Gwinnett County Commission Chairman Charlotte Nash. “Partnership Gwinnett’s public and private efforts play a fundamental role in making such successes possible. Today, our community celebrates the powerful impact that the initiative has had on the county. We look ahead to the next five years with a collaborative strategic plan to ensure our continued success.”
With implementation of Partnership Gwinnett nearing the end of its five-year cycle, Gwinnett County stakeholders have once again come together to assess the community’s competitive position for jobs, investment, and talent. Much is different from the first time the County launched economic development strategic planning and implementation. Nearly five years of implementation success has raised expectations for the next phase of the Partnership Gwinnett plan; and, perhaps most importantly, the second iteration of Gwinnett’s strategic plan launches in one of the most challenging economic climates in recent U.S. history.
The Partnership Gwinnett initiative has been led by the Gwinnett Chamber and over 160 public and private partners for the last five years. Continued collaboration at this level is critical to ensure that the community employs its educated workforce and maintains the superior quality of life for which it is so well known.
Partnership Gwinnett Co-Chair, Randy Dellinger, District Manager at Jackson EMC, said, “Despite the economic downturn and nationwide unemployment crisis, Gwinnett County has had the lowest jobless rate in the core Metro Atlanta counties for the past 28 months. This is not by accident- it is through the partnership of dedicated individuals from the public and private sectors working in sync to generate results. This new economic development strategy for Gwinnett will confidently lead our community into the next five years to create more jobs and wealth in our county.”
Gwinnett County has experienced a net job gain in the Partnership Gwinnett initial target industries: Healthcare, Distribution and Trade, Corporate and Regional Headquarters, Professional Services, Information Technology, and Advanced Communications. From 2009 to 2010, Gwinnett County added 1,925 jobs in these industries.
“The transformation of Gwinnett County’s community and economic development program is exemplary. Market Street often cites Partnership Gwinnett as one of the finest implementation efforts in the country.” said Mac Holladay, CEO of Market Street Services.
The 2012-2017 Implementation Plan supports a holistic vision for the prosperity of all Gwinnettians through the provision of good jobs, adequate housing, social opportunities, and a community that makes its residents proud. Through comprehensive economic development, cultivating world-class talent, and fostering community and leadership development, the plan seeks to bring economic growth to the next level amidst the community’s changing demographics.
This increasing diversity provides opportunistic growth areas for Gwinnett, one of which is minority-owned and diverse businesses. Gwinnett County ranks among the top three percent of all U.S. counties in terms of minority business ownership, with more than 40 percent of county businesses being minority owned. And while most counties with high rates are heavily influenced by one or two large minority groups, Gwinnett stands out as being one of the few counties with three significant minority business communities. Gwinnett is one of just eight counties in the nation where Black, Asian, and Hispanic ownership rates each exceed nine percent. It is the only county outside of the New York, Washington, D.C., and Houston areas that meets such criteria.
“The Partnership Gwinnett initiative is a true success only because of the 160 public and private partners that dedicate their financial resources, time and energy to ensuring its development and in turn the continued growth of the economy, both in our community and in the region,” said Nick Masino, Vice-President of Gwinnett Chamber Economic Development and Partnership Gwinnett. “Their support and collaborative dedication has brought more than 280 companies and 12,000 jobs to Gwinnett since the inception of the initiative in 2007. Today, we unveil to the community a plan created with their crucial collaboration to ensure that this success continues to multiply in the next five years.”
Executive volunteers’ leadership from both the public and private sectors led the community in creating the new five year strategic plan for economic development in Gwinnett. Hundreds of community volunteers participated over eight months in everything from a community survey, focus groups and interviews to numerous strategic roundtable meetings and engaging the county’s key leadership.
Partnership Gwinnett’s steering committee members include:
Steering Committee Chairs
Dr. Dan Kaufman
Georgia Gwinnett College
McKenna, Long & Aldridge
Renee Byrd Lewis
Steering Committee Members
Gwinnett Place CID
Andersen, Tate & Carr
Gwinnett Coalition of Health & Human Services
Arnall Golden Gregory
Mayor, City of Duluth
Gwinnett Daily Post
Georgia House of Representatives
Council for Quality Growth
Gwinnett County Public Schools
Emory Eastside Medical Center
Gwinnett Village CID
Community Foundation for NE GA
Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful
Gwinnett County Public Schools
GCVB, Gwinnett Center
Gwinnett County Public Schools
To learn more about Partnership Gwinnett’s new five-year implementation plan, please visit http://new.partnershipgwinnett.com/.
About Partnership Gwinnett
Partnership Gwinnett is Gwinnett’s economic and community development initiative. Led by the Gwinnett Chamber and a host of public and private partners, the initiative targets the retention and expansion of existing Gwinnett businesses in addition to the development of new business in five key market segments: Healthcare; Advanced Communications; Information Technology; Trade & Distribution; and Regional/Corporate Headquarters. The ultimate goal is to promote economic wealth & diversification, increase education and work force excellence, improve quality of life and heighten visibility through marketing and outreach programs for the entire Gwinnett community. For more information on Partnership Gwinnett, the internationally award-winning community and economic development initiative, please visit www.partnershipgwinnett.com.