Economic and Community Development
Bloodless ED Takeover
The Chamber of Commerce of St. Joseph County in South Bend, IN announced last month that they will now lead business attraction efforts for the county. The move, jointly announced by the chamber and Project Future, the organization that previously performed this function, came after the head of Project Future accepted a role assisting innovation commercialization effort at the University of Notre Dame. Project Future will cease to exist starting January 1, 2012.
St. Joseph County Chamber president Jeff Rea said, “We are excited about these changes and believe they are in the best interests of both organizations and this community. This clarity and focus, the clear delineation of roles and responsibilities and the leveraging of key assets and resources, better position St. Joseph County for future prosperity.” The move creates a "one stop shop" for prospects and positions the chamber as the single point of contact for all business needs. The chamber previously led retention, expansion and workforce efforts.
“We still have a little heavy lifting to do," Rea added, "but it’s a move in the right direction and we really are seeing the community start to rally around the effort.”
This is the latest example in a growing list of recent chamber-ED mergers. Check out this blog post for other recent mergers – Chamber ED Merger Talk on the Rise – and look for an extensive cover story on this topic in the winter issue of Chamber Executive magazine.