October 2019 Business Connection

Page 1



Business Connection

Volume 11, Issue 10

Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce

Longview Public Schools' Dan Zorn and Jill Diehl presented information about the district's upcoming bond, CTE/STEM curriculum and the importance of partnerships at the Chamber of Commerce's Quarterly Membership Luncheon in September.

Longview Public Schools Superintendent Dan Zorn

Vocational Programs Move Careers to the Front of the Class Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce Team Bill Marcum, CEO Amy Hallock Project Manager Pam Fierst Office Manager Joelle Wilson Social Media Services

Kelso Longview Business Connection is published monthly by the Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce 105 N. Minor Road • Kelso, WA 98626 • 360-423-8400 kelsolongviewchamber.org To advertise, call Bill Marcum, 360-423-8400 or email bmarcum@ kelsolongviewchamber.org Ad Deadline: 20th of each month


ast year, Longview Public Schools opened the new pre-apprenticeship program at Mark Morris High School. The pre-apprenticeship program is designed to provide our graduates options to go straight into an apprentice trade program and work. This year, the school district held a grand opening event for the new STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) vocational program at R.A. Long High School. The high tech vocational program will provide students opportunities to pursue medical, manufacturing and technology careers after graduation. The district’s vocational programs are open to all Longview high school students, regardless of the school they attend. This means students from R.A. Long can take pre-apprenticeship classes at Mark Morris and vice versa. When people hear about these two new vocational programs they often ask why the district has included $8.4 million in the bond measure for vocational education. If you’ve visited our construction technology

shop, metal or welding work areas or our culinary arts kitchen at the high schools you probably wouldn’t ask this question. While the district has upgraded two vocational programs using grant, donation and district resources, the other programs need significant upgrades. If the school bond measure passes, all the vocational programs in the district will receive an upgrade. Specifically, every program will get upgraded classrooms, workspaces, equipment and tools. This means students will be taught current work concepts and methods, then apply them using industry standard tools and equipment. Additionally, workspaces will be changed or modified to accommodate modern safety practices. The district’s goal is for graduates to leave school with options. Currently, about half of Longview Public Schools’ graduating seniors move on to more schooling. This includes students who move For more Longview Public Schools, see page 3

in Cowlitz County


current openings.


f 3.18 is the average GPA of LCC transfer students attending Washington public universities

Did You


f 81% of LCC Professional-Technical Graduates are employed in less than one year

Millwright, Electrician, Pipefitter, Instrumentation, KNOW Production, and other positions E M P L O Y E R S | LTHANK O C A L S T UYOU. DENTS ? Thank you for allowing us the privilege of doing f Associate degree holders earn 19% more on average than high school graduates

f Over $18 million in Financial Aid awarded in 2013-14 f Over $500,000 in LCC scholarships available

business in the Kelso-Longview area.

Thousands of jobs in Washington are unfilled due to lack of skilled workers.

NOW HIRING Journeymen Millwrights

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80% of the critical, but unfilled, jobs in today’s economy are in STEM* and Health Care— and the gap is widening by 5,000 jobs a year

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Technology, Engineering, Math Proud contributor*Science, to the annual Cardboard Boat Regatta and other community events.


We’re all about Student Success!


Growing Jobs. Expanding Trade.

2013 report from the Boston Consulting Group and the Washington Roundtable on jobs in Washington State.

“The Advising and Nursing staff has helped with my self-esteem and confidence and I believe that I am capable of achieving anything, which I wasn’t 100% sure about when I started this journey. My success has everything to do with coming to Lower Columbia College and being accepted, for who I am. I know I am in charge of my future.”

The LCC Student Success Fund helps students who are most at risk for abandoning their higher education goals due to financial hardship. The fund helps with:

Dan mtvcontracting. We have room for 80 local businesses to Frazier inform our 8th, 9th360-749-3107 and 10th graders from every school • Tuition not covered by other aid

Angela Gates, recipient of the 2015 Transforming Lives Award

• Textbook expenses • Testing Fees

Licensed Bonded MOUNTVC853D6 district in Cowlitz County on what you do, what careers&are available in your organization and COLUMBIA COLLEGEstudents that they can be what education is needed to be hired into those jobs.LOWER Show our local s heating and cooling systems provide successful in our own region! Help educate our kids for futureChoice! employment and ensure your Thetheir Smart nd comfort and saves you up to 50% on continued growth and success. ctric heating bill. With an $800 rebate from • Emergency childcare expenses • Emergency transportation

Angela Gates

Make a difference with your corporate support or individual donation to the LCC Foundation’s Student Success Fund.

To support the Student Success Fund contact foundation@lowercolumbia.edu

1600 Maple Street, Longview, WA 98632 PUD, installing a ductless heat pump has een this easy and affordable.

LCC is an equal opportunity institution.

Sign up for your space today! ted now by finding an experienced There is no cost to participate!

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9:30 am to 1:30 pm

| 360.442.2311 | lowercolumbia.edu

www.kelsolongviewchamber.org or call 360-423-8400

11.14.19 azing!

Be part of something


Cowlitz STEM NETWORK Part of the

Cowlitz County Conference Center Longview, WA

Over 1000 local students!

Longview Public Schools, continued from page 1 on to a four-year college or university, community college or trade school. The other half of graduates either enlist in the military or go directly into the workforce. We are working hard to provide learning experiences that meet the post high school needs of all of our students, regardless of the path they choose. The students who go straight into the workforce need to graduate with what we call a “work ready” status. This means graduating young adults with skills from both in an out of the classroom to support them being successful at work. Upgrading vocational programs is one of the highest priorities citizens, teachers, civic leaders and organizations have expressed about the bond measure – and we listened. If the bond measure passes, Longview Public Schools will have some of the most up-todate vocational facilities in the area. If you have questions about the school bond, or anything else, please give me a call. More bond information is available at longviewschools.com.

An Anatomage Table breathes new life into anatomy classes using 3D imaging.

We’re proud to be your partners in health As the largest healthcare provider in Cowlitz County,

our team has the experience and comprehensive services to guide you through whatever life brings your way. n Pediatric Care n Advanced Heart & Vascular Care n Behavioral Health Services for adults and children n Comprehensive Women’s Health Services and modern Family Birthing Center peacehealth.org/longview

October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | 3

Cowlitz Economic Development Council By Ted Sprague CEO

Area Projects Making Incredible Progress

As the leaves begin to change and a chill returns to the air it is a good time to reflect on the positive things taking place in our communities and think about what lies ahead. The past few months has seen incredible progress on projects from our 40 for 2020 (now known at Connecting Cowlitz Communities) brainstorming sessions and the goals we all put forward. Not the least of which is Lower Columbia College’s first Bachelor of Applied Science, Teacher Education cohort. For years, many of us in the community have worked to increase educational opportunities for Cowlitz County residents. This exciting four-year degree puts us on a path to more success in the future. In another area of education, the increased focus on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) has taken huge leaps forward at all of our local high schools. The latest celebration centered on R.A. Long’s brand new STEM lab. The team from JH Kelly did an incredible job constructing the $1.1 million facility, which will be used by our students for generations to come. If you have a chance, you must check out the Anatomage Table. Students will be able to learn and work on the human body using this 3D table in ways never thought possible.

All of these educational opportunities are impressive, but we ultimately need local jobs to employ our citizens. This is truly an exciting time as we have a portfolio of more than $5 billion worth of capital investment either in the permitting phase, pre-permitting or due diligence phase. Some of these companies you have heard of for years and some are confidential, but the range of projects is striking. We have one of the most innovative projects in the world getting close to construction at the Port of Kalama. The Northwest Innovation Works project continues to hone its scope to meet the stringent environmental standards of Washington state. In my more than 20 years of economic development, I have never worked with a company so willing to go above and beyond environmental thresholds. Zero liquid discharge into the Columbia River, ultra low emissions technology, offset of 100 percent of green house gasses (GHG) in Washington state and an overall reduction in GHG worldwide by displacing coal to methanol plants. As they continue to the finish line it is important we in the economic development community support this global leader.

Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Frank Panarra, President

Ken Botero Longview City Council

Bruce Pollock Bicoastal Media

Bianca Lemmons, President Elect Cowlitz County Title

Bob Crisman Gallery of Diamonds

Tom Rozwod NORPAC

Chris Roewe, Vice President Woodford Commercial Real Estate

Rich Gushman Gibbs & Olson

Ted Sprague Cowlitz Economic Development Council

Neil Zick, Treasurer Twin City Bank

Marlene Johanson Red Canoe Credit Union

Lisa Straughan Express Employment Professionals

Michael Claxton, Legal Counsel

Wendy Kosloski Teague's Interiors

Michael Vorse Minuteman Press

Foster Farms

Walstead Mertsching

Nick Lemiere, Executive Board Edward Jones

Nancy Malone Mayor of Kelso Cherelle Montanye St. John/PeaceHealth

4 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

Dennis Weber Cowlitz County Commissioner


TH MainStageSeason





The Songs You Hate to Love! 60s • 70s • 80s • 90s Saturday, October 19th 7:30 p.m.

You probably can’t get them out of your head—the songs we all know from the 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s. Songs that made a band famous—or infamous—for a brief moment in time. Here’s a great minimusical mash-up complete with hilarious retro video intros. • Monster Mash • Witch Doctor • the Macarena • My Sharona • Wipe Out • Turn the Beat Around • Ring My Bell • It’s Raining Men • Guardians of the Galaxy Medley • You Light up my Life • Rockin Robin • Jenny 867-5309 • Dirty Dancing Medley • Play that Funky Music • Boogie Oogie Oogie • Me and Mrs. Jones • Hooked on a Feeling • Whip It • Oh Mickey • Do You Love Me? • Video Killed The Radio Star • and many more..... Tickets $35-$45, Students $20. Dorothy Gevers-Wojtowych


Art and Music Gone Wild!

Sunday, November 10th 2:00 p.m.

IMAGINE an artist creating a masterpiece before your eyes in mere moments. Accompanied by captivating vocals, intricate choreography and exciting audience interaction—Artrageous takes you on a unique visual journey packed with wild inspiration, creativity and fun! This troupe of artists, musicians, singers and dancers pay tribute to a variety of art forms, pop icons and musical genres culminating in a gallery of fabulous finished paintings. The result? A one of a kind crossover experience! ARTRAGEOUS is an interactive art and music extravaganza unlike anything you have ever experienced. Be prepared to be a part of the show! Live Music, Live Art, over-the-top family fun! Tickets $30-$40, Students $20. Dorothy Gevers-Wojtowych


Thursday, November 7th 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Two Americans on a hunting trip in Scotland become lost. They encounter a small village, not on the map, called Brigadoon, in which people harbor a mysterious secret, and behave as if they were still living two hundred years in the past. Tickets $8 each.

DON’T MISS A MOMENT! • 360.575.TIXX (8499) • www.columbiatheatre.com

Lower Columbia College By Chris Bailey President

Update On LCC's International Program

This month, I am very excited to update you on the success of the Lower Columbia College (LCC) International Program. In 2011, the LCC International Program was created to add diversity and worldview to our campus and to our community. We are a global community that depends on world trade. Forty percent of all jobs in Washington are related to international trade. Our students need a worldview–the ability to understand and work within cultures other than our own. In 2011, we had two international students enrolled at LCC. Last year, our international program brought us 25 high-tuition, full-time equivalent students to this campus. These students contributed by serving on student government and by being LCC student ambassadors. We have signed agreements with two colleges–CTITC, in China, and Atomi University in Tokyo and Niisa, Japan. With Atomi University, we offer two short-term programs on our campus, one in the winter and one in the summer, where students come and stay with host families for two to three weeks, study English language and culture, and engage in community service.

LCC also has a signed agreement with Three Rivers Christian High School to support an “International Running Start” program for their international students. In November, I will be traveling to Longview’s sister city in Wako, Japan, to sign an agreement with Wako International High School, as they intend to begin sending some of their graduating high school students to LCC each and every year. Our international program brought in more than $250,000 in new revenue to the college last year and produced a net profit of over $44,000. The program contributed $25,000 of its net profit to the college’s general operating budget for this upcoming year. The program is now beginning to grow quickly. This year, in addition to the two short-term program cohorts, we will have 35 full-time international students enrolled at LCC! These students will continue to make a positive impact on our campus and in our community. LCC Proud!

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There’s a Difference. 6 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

Calendar Wednesday

Chamber CEO’s Message By Bill Marcum

October 2 – 8:30-9:30am Education Foundation Goodwill Thursday October 3 – 7:30-8:30am Ambassadors Meeting Columbia Bank Friday October 4 – 7:30-9am Business Bootcamp Jerry Petrick “Labor Cost Going Up January 1” Lower Columbia College October 4 – 6-9pm Lower Columbia Professionals OktoberFest Kelso Elks Tuesday October 8 – 5:30-7:30pm Business After Hours Steele Chapel Friday

Still Time to Walk Into Boot Camp and Bonus Wow, Boot Camp this fall has been awesome...too bad only about 15 to 18 people from 12 businesses are getting some of this excellent training. We have had some great facilitators with years of experience running their own businesses and companies very, very successfully. The old adage learn from those who are doing it right and apply that to your business applies here. We have three classes left this fall...they are listed below. I hope to see some of you at these classes. I want to make sure your business is as successful as it can be. To attend give us a call at 360-423-8400. Up to four people from each business can attend for $25, that’s about $5 per person. Why wouldn’t you?

October 11 – 7:30-9am

Boot Camp this Friday, Oct. 4, 7:30-9 a.m.

Business Bootcamp

Labor Cost Going UP January 1

David Futcher “What We Wish Our Clients Knew” Lower Columbia College Tuesday October 15 – Noon Chamber Executive Board Mill City Grill Friday October 18 – 7:30-9am Business Bootcamp Cassondra Rosales “Safety 101” Lower Columbia College Tuesday October 22 – Noon Chamber Board Meeting, Mill City Grill Every Wednesday Chamber Connections KEDO/1400 AM or 99.1 FM 3-4pm Stream live at www.kedoam.com

Strategies to Success Facilitated by Jerry Petrick, Small Business Development Center ••• Jerry has spent many years working with small business owners to help them return a higher rate of profit. The two basics are sell more product and reduce expenses, right? But how do you do that? How do you sell more product? What expenses do I cut? Jerry will lead this discussion and offer tips and strategies to answer those questions that will lead to a great profit margin for your business. Boot Camp Friday, Oct. 11, 7:30-9 a.m. What We Wish Our Clients Knew Facilitated by David Futcher, Managing Partner, Futcher Group, CPA ••• David has built his business one block at a time

and currently has 15 people on staff. He also has served on the Kelso City Council for 14 years with 10 of those years as mayor. He has also been a member of the Kelso Rotary Club for nearly 20 years also serving as president of the club a couple of times. I asked David, with the tax season coming up, what would you like to convey to local businesses? Many businesses bring their taxes to The Futcher Group so if you could give advice to those local businesses “before” they bring their taxes to you what would it be? His response to me was... “Oh, what I wish our clients knew...” Hence the title for this class. Help yourself, your business and your accountant, don’t miss this fun and factfilled class. We have a FREE BONUS class to any business and their staff. This is normally more than $100 class per person and Cassondra has offered it to Chamber members at no cost. It is very important to get this training for you and your staff. Please contact the Chamber if you are going to attend. Thank you. PUBLIC SAFETY TRAINING 101 Five topics: How to file a report (police, city and violations); how to be a good witness; personal safety in public; community tools and resources; and crime prevention through environmental design. To get you started, the training also has a workbook that will be provided to help you in becoming safer, more aware and active in your community and its safety. Cassondra Rosales SlapShot USA is a company that offers more than just guns and ammo. They work to provide products and services that offer better options and information on personal and home defense. SlapShot USA is offering this Public Safety 101 training at no cost for this Boot Camp. Three great classes left to help your business and your staff. Hope to see you there.

October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | 7

The Executive Corner By Frank McShane Square Peg Consulting

Can You Motivate Your Employees?

Are you getting your employees’ full effort? If not, what can you do? Management experts have long debated whether or not leaders can motivate people. There are examples of charismatic leaders who have inspired their employees to achieve at very high levels. Most of these examples occurred in conjunction with a significant challenge or threat to the business. In the normal course of business, trying to motivate people can seem like frustrating hard work combined with a lot of trial and error. From Outside or Inside? My experience in leading teams is that each individual’s motivation comes largely from inside. If a person finds the goals and work appealing, challenging, and rewarding, they are more likely to be engaged and put in the extra effort that all bosses would like to see. The hard part for the leader is figuring out what would appeal to different people.

Reducing Trial and Error Some employees are very open about what they would find motivating. Many are harder to read. The first mistake to avoid is to assume that they would be motivated by the same things that motivate you. Each person is different, not only in personality and perspective, but also in what they will find engaging and stimulating. There are several assessment tools available to management that provide objective insight into people’s sources of motivation. General Categories of Need The motivation to accomplish something comes from the desire to satisfy a need caused by our innate drives. Below are four categories of work-related drives and needs that can provide insight into what an individual will find motivating. Also provided are suggested strategies for satisfying the strongest drive and needs that will fuel the individual’s motivation: Employee’s Strongest Drive Dominance

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8 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

• • • • • •

Related Needs Independence Control of Work Desire to put their own mark on results Social Acceptance Respect Belonging to a Team


• • •

Security Predictability Long-Term Affiliation


• • •

Structure Freedom from Error A clear path to success

• • • • • • • • • • • • •

Management Strategy Delegation of Authority Significant Challenge Opportunity for Creativity Individual Recognition Collaborative ProblemSolving Team Recognition Public Recognition Steady, Predictable Work Seniority Recognition Stable Priorities Training Clear Expectations Consistent Enforcement of Policies

Chess vs. Checkers Unlike checkers, where all the pieces move the same way, helping employees find motivation is more like playing chess, where each piece moves differently. As you can see, there are a number of options available to managers to encourage motivation for each employee. Assess your current approach with each employee to see if you are tailoring it to their needs or using the one-size-fits-all method. Frank McShane is President of Square Peg Consulting. For questions or comments, please contact him at fvm@SqrPegConsulting or (360) 562-1077.

Chess vs. Checkers

Unlike checkers, where all the pieces move the same way, helping employees find motivation is more like playing chess, where each piece moves differently. As you can see, there are a number of options available to managers to encourage motivation for each employee. Assess your current approach with each employee to see if you are tailoring it to their needs or using the one-size-fits-all method. Frank McShane is president of Square Peg Consulting. For questions or comments, please contact him at fvm@SqrPegConsulting.com or 360-562-1077.



Did you know that the Port of Kalama is part of the Pacific Northwest Waterways Association? The Port of Kalama works with the other Lower Columbia River Ports as a member of the Pacific Northwest Waterways Association (PNWA)—a non-profit trade association that helps ensure our waterways are efficient, reliable, and environmentally sustainable. PNWA members include ports, businesses, public agencies and individuals who combine their economic and political strength in support of navigation, energy, trade and economic development throughout the Pacific Northwest. To put the Port of Kalama’s place in the Pacific Northwest in perspective, the Columbia Snake River System is the nation’s number one wheat export gateway and number two soybean export gateway which is fed by a 365-mile, 14-foot draft inland barge system which stretches from Portland, OR to Lewiston, ID. The river system exported over 50 million tons of cargo in 2016. It is also the west coast’s number one wood and mineral bulks export gateway and a rising importer/exporter of vehicles. In all, over $21 billion worth of cargo moves on the Columbia Snake River System each year. As a part of the Columbia Snake River System, the Port of Kalama is a strong advocate of the PNWA and their work to support the region on critical economic, environmental and transportation programs and issues. The PNWA mission: PNWA strengthens the regional economy by increasing economic and environmental sustainability, while providing a cooperative, regional approach to addressing public policy. The organization monitors and advocates on issues impacting the environment, energy, salmon habitat and relationshipbuilding. For more information, visit www.pnwa.net


City of Kelso

City of Longview

By Councilman David Futcher

By City Councilman Ken Botero

Tam O'Shanter facelift well deserved I’ve always marveled at the volume of use Tam O’Shanter Park gets during the sports seasons. It’s been a busy summer at the park, and after all of the construction dust has settled, we’re left with a noticeably upgraded facility. The improvements were unveiled to many at the recent Highlander Festival. While precipitation and an athletic field in transition presented challenges to this year’s festival, the potential was clear to all. Additional parking and an access road on the perimeter of the lot made it easier to get around. A new, wider entrance provided room for two vehicles to comfortably pass, while pedestrians had a new sidewalk to keep them safely separated from entering traffic. The second phase of these improvements should be completed next year, when the loop surrounding the central field will be reconstructed, and the gravel between the field and the playground and pavilion area will be paved for the first time, as will the new circulation loop running behind the softball fields, connecting with the high school access road. I think that would be the first time in the park’s history that it will be without gravel surfaces. Funding for these improvements was largely provided by state grants, with the local contribution coming mostly from the sale of wetland credits generated from improvements made on city property along the Coweeman River. The $2 million awarded for these projects over the last couple years is a testament to the relationships built with our state legislators. When I first started on the council 15 years ago, Kelso rarely pursued such funding. Steve Taylor helped us find lobbyists who have encouraged us to develop stronger relationships with our representatives, and have helped us tell our story more successfully to Olympia. The improvements at Tam O’Shanter Park are tangible proof of their support.

We can make the dream happen Here in Longview we take a serious look at our economic development issues and follow the thinking of the Brookings Report as we look at our community as a broad umbrella–looking at just about everything from widespread inclusiveness to our infrastructure. But moving high up on the list in our community is the tackling of issues like livability and housing affordability, which is a mainstay in growing our economy and attracting and maintaining talent. Talented workers actually have choices of where to live and, as we have seen locally, they are exercising these choices, choosing to live in places that are building great communities that are diverse, interesting, bikeable, walkable neighborhoods, which in turn open doors for companies to locate in communities that provide the opportunities for their employees to live, and participate, closer to their jobs, creating an atmosphere of belonging. In Longview we are very proud to have excelled in the dream world of today’s society. Located just two miles off of Interstate 5, we are nestled in the beautiful Northwest and are bordered by the amazing Columbia River to the south, the ever beautiful mountains to the east, the exciting Pacific Ocean to the west, and the ever growing hustle and bustle of the Seattle area. If you want a quality of place for your employees to live visit the Jewel of Southwest Washington, Longview, and feel the serene atmosphere of the livability offered to all who reside in the community. The economic adventure for the future is a dream our residents, community leaders, efficient city staff carry forward. It is our awareness of what it takes to provide for a positive experience for those in our community as we provide for positive education, with the expectation this is a community I want my children to experience as positive and dedicated to education. The Longview school district, Lower Columbia College and many private education facilities provide each of us with that opportunity. The advantage of living within a community that provides small business opportunities as well as major industry and technology is a positive dream for the future. We invite each of you who are looking for that quality of place to

Residential & Commercial gro.n.control@gmail.com

visit the beautiful jewel of the northwest, Longview, and realize that your dream can come true, whether it is providing for your employees or finding that right fit for your families, you won’t want to miss our dream here in Longview.

10 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

Friday October 4, 2019 e v a S te festivities start at 6:00 pm

a D the

Kelso-Longview Elks 900 Ash St, Kelso

Beer! Brats! Pretzels! Games! Music! Raffle Prizes! & More! Tickets ~ $20 per person Register online at


Hosted by Lower Columbia Professionals #itsforthekids

gross margin (or gross profit) of 49 percent Gross margin $$ = $63,700 Average inventory @ cost = $40,625

Business Toolbox By Jerry D. Petrick Certified Business Adviser

GMROI = $63,700 / $40,625 = $1.57 What does this mean? This means your business is getting $1.57 in gross margin back for every $1 invested in inventory in this category for the year.

Do You Know Your GMROI?

This is a great to know – the REAL power comes when you compare categories or product lines against one another and/or against prior years.

In my experience I find the world is filled with three types of business owners: 1. Those who make their business profitable 2. Those who watch their competitors earn a profit 3. Those who wonder if their business is or will ever be profitable (and are afraid to find out)


Power of GMROI = comparison, better decision making and higher profits

Power of GMROI = comparison, better decision making and higher profits

For example:

For example:

Which of these four products provides the best return inventory $s? on inventory Which of these four products provides theonbest return dollars? Which Product is Best?

My guess is you could immediately identify with one of these three types of businesses/owners – perhaps you know one VERY well. No matter which flavor of business you are part of or responsible for now is a great time to at least eliminate Choice 3; ignorance is not a reasonable excuse when it is SO easy to take the pulse of your business’s performance. You truly owe it to yourself and those who rely on you to run a profitable business. I encourage you to take a few minutes to make a handful of easy calculations to provide you with fact-based insights to the financial health of your business. Note: This metric applies to businesses with inventory – there are just as easy and powerful measures for service businesses. One of the best tools for measuring and managing the productivity of your inventory investment is GMROI–gross margin return on inventory investment.

Product A Product B Product C Product D

GMROI indicates how much gross margin you get back for each dollar “invested” in inventory. Through careful analysis, you can see which lines, departments or categories are the most rewarding for your inventory investment. And which are least productive! Here’s the formula for calculating GMROI: Note: Use annual numbers; “gross margin” is sometimes called “gross profit” GMROI = gross margin $$ divided by average inventory @ cost For example, consider this merchandise category with annual sales of $130,000 at a gross margin (or gross profit) of 49 percent

Gross margin $$ = $63,700

Average inventory @ cost = $40,625

GMROI = $63,700 / $40,625 = $1.57

What does this mean?


$315,400 $220,100 $210,500 $186,500

46% 41% 48% 42%

AVERAGE INVENTORY @ COST $102,400 $53,000 $86,100 $33,700

Let’s look.

Products B and C have similar sales, but C has the highest margin. Let’s look.

Product A department has the highest sales (greatfor“top line” gets our attention!) BUT…which performs “BEST” this retailer? Product A has the highest sales (great “top line” gets our attention!) Products B and C have similar sales, but C has the highest margin. CAUTION: This might not“BEST” be as obvious as retailer? you think! BUT…which department performs for this

CAUTION: This might not be as obvious as you think!

We can only answer this after we calculate the GMROI.

We can only answer this after we calculate the GMROI.

Below are the GMROI calculations for each of these four products.

Below are the GMROI calculations for each of these four products.

It’s fast and easy to calculate. Most important of all, it provides powerful insights for retailers. CALCULATING GMROI


Which Product Performs Best? SALES




Product A





Product B





Product C





Product D





Product D – we will often overlook product D because it has the Product D – we will often overlook product D because it has the lowest sales and lowest sales and margin – AND it has the highest GMROI. The lower margin - AND it has the highest GMROI. The lower margin is offset by its higher margin offset by its higher inventory turns. inventoryisturns. Remember: Sales and margin percentage don’t give us the full picture ofRemember: a product/product Sales andline/department margin percentagefinancial don’t give return. us the full picture of a product/product line/department financial return.

Want to look at your products/departments RIGHT NOW? Use this quick approach. Want to look at your products/departments RIGHT NOW? Use this quick approach.

Lookup the gross margin dollars (of a department) for a week. Then

Lookup the gross (of a department) for a week. multiply it by 52 multiply it by 52 margin weeks dollars and complete the calculation byThen dividing your weeks and complete the calculation by dividing your current on-hand inventory at cost current on-hand inventory at cost into the “annualized” figure for into the ‘annualized’ figure for gross margin dollars.

gross margin dollars.

This means your business is getting $1.57 in gross margin back for every $1 invested in inventory in this category for the year.

Hint: Many of today’s POS systems, this is quick to calculate and useful for comparing departments on demand. This may influence your purchasing decisions.

This is a great to know – the REAL power comes when you compare categories or product lines against one another and/or against prior

For more Petrick, see page 13

12 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

Petrick, continued from page 12 DYNAMIC MANAGEMENT TOOL FOR RETAILERS You can calculate GMROI by product, as on the previous page, or by categories, seasons, vendors, regions or individual stores. The GMROI calculation provides insights into the productivity of your inventory dollars. You will find a new awareness when each product line is considered in terms of gross margin profitability and inventory turnover. A GMROI well below the others should be questioned. Ask questions like these: • “Am I committing too much inventory to this category?” • “Could my vendor ship more frequently (this could also help reduce storage costs/space requirements)?”

• “Given the amount of inventory I have to buy; is a ‘this week only’ special really a wise inventory investment?” • “How much can I cut prices to increase sales without lowering my GMROI in that category?”

This article was compiled using multiple sources, including those from the Retail Owners Institute (retailowner.com) by Jerry Petrick, MBA, and certified business adviser with the Washington State University Small Business Development Center (SBDC). Jerry provides confidential business advisory services by appointment at no cost to the client. He can be reached at jerry.petrick@wsbdc.org

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Kelso School District Superintendent Mary Beth Tack

Kelso School District By The Numbers

Another school year is well underway and a few things have changed here at Kelso School District. Just like you can never step in the same river twice, you can never attend the same school district twice. Here’s a fresh look at who we are as a body of students and staff, and what’s happening in our six areas of focus.

• 68 percent – have a master’s degree

Our Students

• 4 percent – went to UW (Huskies)

• 87.3 percent – 2018 grad rate (compared to the state average of 80.9 percent) • $2.3 million – in scholarship money for class of 2019 • 49 percent – of Kelso graduates enrolled in two- or four-year university, technical college or military programs • 5,146 – total students • 57 percent – free and reduced lunch • 24 – different languages spoken by students • 206 – students attend Kelso schools on a boundary exception from neighboring districts Our Teachers • 12.4 – average years of teaching experience

• 25 – are National Board Certified • 25 percent – attended Kelso schools themselves • 38 percent – went to WSU (Cougars) Our District • 689 – total staff • 2019 Winner “Best Place to Work” in Cowlitz County by The Daily News Our Focus Areas Climate and Culture • 100 percent of elementary classrooms start their day with socialemotional learning (SEL) • 100 percent of elementary schools have multi-tiered systems of supports • 79 percent reduction in behavior-based special education referrals Early Learning • 200-plus – people attended Kinderpalooza to support kinder readiness • 31 percent – of eligible pre-K kids are enrolled in Head Start/ECEAP • 100 percent – of K-1 students receive a strong research-based literacy foundation Quality Instruction • 100 percent of purchased instructional materials rank highest in EdReports • Priority goals include English language arts (ELA) and mathematics • 2018-19 adoptions included world language, high school ELA, and music • 2019-20 adoption pilot includes K-8 mathematics Career, College and Community Ready

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• 1 of 4 districts in the state on the Advanced Placement Honor Roll • 15 – AP/Honors/College in the High School classes offered • 53 – CTE (career and technical education) courses offered • 57.6 percent – of high school students completed at least one dual credit course Fiscal and Bond • $139.8 million – total 2019-20 budget ($60 million allocated for school construction) • 2018 voter-approved bond is tracking on time and on budget (visit WeAreKelso.org for up-to-date information) • Upcoming February 11, 2020 levy Communication • Best in Category – state-level award for Hilander Highlights newsletters • bit.ly/KSDplan – to see our strategic plan


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Cowlitz County Commissioners By Arne Mortensen

Budget Time Taxing On All Involved

On the mundane, but critical, is the currently ongoing County budget effort. This is the time when departments bring to commissioners their best guess about their needs to conduct government business. I did say needs versus wants; discerning the difference between those two is a job for the commissioners. There will be many budget meetings before a final budget is adopted. Many budget meetings involve the three commissioners and are open to the public, as they should be. Few of the public has the time or flexibility (or the patience) to sit through these meetings. Really, they shouldn’t have to; we are supposed to be public servants carefully guarding the interest of the people. We welcome their attendance. The public should be reminded at every opportunity that we are running a train toward a brick wall because, even with no growth of employees or new initiatives, revenue growth is capped (and it should be) by the well-known 1 percent limit applied to the major source of funding, property taxes…yet costs grow by multiples of that percentage. What keeps us afloat? Sales tax revenue is part of the answer, but

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16 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

counting on such an ephemeral source is very risky. Times are good right now, but… It is revenue from the landfill and a levy shift of the road fund that keeps us afloat. The latter two in 2019 combined to give the general fund $8.5 million! There is insatiable demand for government largesse; we must resist those demands, and we must start to dismantle those programs that show no net return. We have a very difficult time getting agencies to give real data on performance. We commissioners must apply a holistic view because we are spending taxpayer money; whether it is local, state or federal money is irrelevant, we must seek to get at least one dollar of value for every dollar spent. Money spent poorly leads to more of the same. Trying to work the budget shows that for the most part we have an unworkable system. There are too many demands for (often unnecessary or destructive) services; there are unfunded mandates; red tape delayed projects; regulatory growth; and so on. And we have permitted a plethora of special interests to get their way, supported by the mantra of “taking care of the vulnerable.” There is only one vulnerable group, the taxpayer. Serious rethinking needs to be done, particularly in Olympia; each of us should press for better policies. Status quo seems to reign, so does a sense of futility; these attitudes are killing us. Typically, the problem we want fixed by the government is made worse, so let’s stop asking for government to fix anything and everything. Let’s recall what JFK said, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.” On a more personal note, earlier this year I attended the annual NACO (National Associations of Counties). This was my first foray as a county commissioner into such an event. It was a gathering of hundreds of elected and staff from many of the several 1,000 counties in the country. With no exceptions, the presentations I saw, at best, were uninspiring. They typically were characterized by any of the following: personal anecdotes/“war stories;” inane restatements of a known problem; particulars with no distillable message or teaching moment; and self-congratulatory accolades. A bothersome observation is that NOT ONCE did I hear a discussion about how we can save taxpayer money. And I came away with no sense that someone had discovered better government approaches. If we are to survive the biggest monopoly in the world, government at every level, we must not pursue policies that ask for government involvement (aka regulations to help us), but policies that ask for the government to leave us alone, to let us figure out how to serve our customers. If small business is to prosper or survive, this is a must. Finally, let me note that this attitude of self-determination should be in our DNA. Is that not the reason this country was founded?

Mind Your Own Business (at the Library) By Chris Skaugset Director – Longview Public Library

Grab a Thriller For This Season

Fall seems to have arrived in force. I am watching the rainfall out-

of institutions, the director, Mrs. Sigsby, and her staff are ruth-

side my window and the ever-changing color palette of our many

lessly dedicated to extracting from these children the force of their

trees here in Longview (Tree City USA). By the time, you read this

extranormal gifts. There are no scruples here. If you go along, you

we will be in October, which is a great time to hunker down with

get tokens for the vending machines. If you don’t, punishment is

some thrilling reads while you dodge rain showers and wait for

brutal. As each new victim disappears to Back Half, Luke becomes

Halloween. Speaking of Halloween, the library will once again have

more and more desperate to get out and get help. But no one has

its annual Monster Mash event Oct. 29. All ages are welcome and

ever escaped from The Institute.”

costumes are encouraged but not required. It is a fun night of stories, games, snacks and crafts. However, while you are waiting for that, here are a few of the latest thrilling reads that you can find at your Longview Public Library. You might notice as you go through this list that it is easy to recognize a potential thriller by its title: a lot of dark ominous sounding words. Enjoy! “Strangers She Knows” by Christina Dodd. “Living on an ob-

“The Body Lies” by Jo Baker. “When a young writer accepts a job at a university in the remote English countryside, it’s meant to be a fresh start, away from the bustle of London and the scene of a violent assault she is desperate to forget. But despite the distractions of her new life and the demands of single motherhood, her nerves continue to jangle. To make matters worse, during class a vicious debate about violence against women inflames the tensions and

scure, technology-free island off California means safety from the

mounting rivalries in her creative writing group. When a troubled

murderer who hunts Kellen Adams and her new family. Or does it?

student starts turning in chapters that blur the lines between fiction

Family time becomes terror-time, and at last, alone, Kellen faces a

and reality, the professor recognizes herself as the main character in

killer playing a cruel game. Only one can survive, and Kellen knows

his book–and he has written her a horrific fate. Will she be able to

who must win and who must die.”

stop life imitating art before it’s too late?”

“The Stranger Inside” by Lisa Unger. “Twelve-year-old Rain

“Keep You Close” by Karen Cleveland. “Stephanie Maddox makes

Winter narrowly escaped an abduction while walking to a friend’s

tough decisions every day. She has her hands full heading the FBI’s

house. Her two best friends, Tess and Hank, were not as lucky. Tess

Internal Investigations division, policing wrongdoers within the

never came home, and Hank was held in captivity before manag-

Bureau. But, as a single mother, the most important thing in her

ing to escape. Their abductor was sent to prison but years later was

life is her teenage son Zachary, who’s anxiously awaiting college

released. Then someone delivered real justice and killed him in cold

acceptance letters. So when she discovers a gun concealed in Zach’s

blood. Now Rain is living the perfect suburban life, her dark child-

room, her world reels. And then an FBI agent on the domestic

hood buried deep. But when another brutal murderer who escaped

terrorism squad shows up at her door and utters three devastating

justice is found dead, Rain is unexpectedly drawn into the case.”

words: ‘It’s about Zachary–’ Has she been wrong about her near-

“The Institute” by Stephen King. “In the middle of the night, in a house on a quiet street in suburban Minneapolis, intruders silently murder Luke Ellis’ parents and load him into a black SUV. The operation takes less than two minutes. Luke will wake up at The

perfect son? Is Zach embroiled in something criminal–something deadly? And, if so, what is her greater duty: To protect him? Or to betray him?” “The Night Before” by Wendy Walker. “Rosie and Laura are as

Institute, in a room that looks just like his own, except there’s no

different as two sisters can be. One is stable and has the perfect

window. And outside his door are other doors, behind which are

family. The other struggles to break free from her troubled past.

other kids with special talents – telekinesis and telepathy – who

When Laura disappears after going on a blind date, Rosie takes

got to this place the same way Luke did: Kalisha, Nick, George, Iris,

matters into her own hands. But as Rosie begins to search for her

and 10-year-old Avery Dixon. They are all in Front Half. Others,

sister, her greatest fears come to the surface. Could Laura be more

Luke learns, graduated to Back Half, ‘like the roach motel,’ Kalisha

of a danger than the stranger she meets, or is the night before her

says. ‘You check in, but you don’t check out.’ In this most sinister

last night alive?” October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | 17

Cowlitz Wahkiakum Council of Governments By Bill Fashing Executive Director

The Census Opportunities and Impacts The Census is a significant critical piece of our everyday lives. Not a single day goes by where countless decisions are made based on the vast array of information collected through the Census. As a Census Affiliate, the Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments (CWCOG) is immersed in Census data and activities. In this day of big data, trying to find what you need can be a challenge. Here are a few resources that might assist in your efforts to understand the Census and what it might be able to provide to you in your everyday efforts. Below are a few resources for you to learn more about the Census and how to access information. The U.S. Census has created its Census Academy to assist the general public in learning data skills. Click here to access the Academy and access information on everything from housing, and population to business and the economy. They also have a section on data visualization. Here are a few specific items that might be of interest. Census Business Builder – Small Business Edition: A Primer Your Business by the Numbers: Introduction to Business Data Tools Survey of Business Owners and Self-Employed Persons The Academy uses a video-based training program they call Data Gems. Census staff members provide their insights and expertise

through these videos to help the general public to understand and access Census materials for periodic use. According to the Census website, “Data Gems are a series of ‘how-to’ videos available for data users who are looking for an easy and quick way to enhance their knowledge of Census data.” Take a look to see what you might be able to find to learn more about your business industry sector, the customers you serve or the community we call home. The Census, as you might have guessed by now, has a wide spectrum of resources. Here is a link to the Statistics in Schools Program. The Statistics in Schools program provides resources for teaching and learning with real life data. Explore the site for standards-aligned, classroom-ready activities. Protecting Privacy Privacy is a huge issue across the globe. As we get further entrenched in our online lives it is important that we continue to learn about the impacts and risks. In this video the author discusses the process taken by the Census bureau to protect the identity of individuals and provides some insights into the world of big data and how what we share can help marketers find us. Economic Census 2017 Economic Census Data Release process has begun. Click here for the full schedule of data releases and for access to economic Census tables, data tools and resources to help find economic Census Data for use in your business.

Consistent Courteous Complete Title and Escrow Services

2020 Census The Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments and other partners are working to create opportunities for area residents to get information on the upcoming Census Day 2020. The CWCOG Complete Count Committee is meeting periodically and serves both Cowlitz and Wahkiakum counties. Complete Count Committees (CCC) are volunteer committees established to increase awareness and motivate residents to respond to the 2020 Census. CCCs serve as state and local “census ambassador” groups that play an integral part in ensuring a complete and accurate count of the community in the 2020 Census. Success of the census depends on community involvement at every level. The U.S. Census Bureau cannot conduct the 2020 Census alone. The population totals from the census determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives. The population totals also affect funding in your community, and data collected in the census help decision makers know how your community is changing. Approximately $675 billion in federal funding is distributed to communities each year based on census count data.

1425 Maple Street • Longview, WA 98632


www.cascade-title.com 18 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

The Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments is a multipurpose association of governments that delivers a diverse array of federal, state and local programs, including transportation and economic development planning, while fulfilling its primary function as a regional planning organization.

Longview Downtowners By Lindsey Cope President

October Fun in Downtown Longview First Thursday – October

“First Class Service at Fibre Federal.” “Fibre Federal has assisted us with several of our business needs. They are knowledgeable, friendly, and go out of their way in assisting us with our stringent business needs. We appreciate all they do for us.” Donna Marko, Owner of Great Escapes Travel Shoppe

Great Escapes Travel Bring your business to Fibre Federal for Business Plus Checking, Business Online Banking, Remote Deposit, low-cost loans, and incredible member service.

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Join us for our October First Thursday Oct. 3 from 5 to 8 p.m. Participating stores will have treats, sales, raffles or other promotions. The Rivers Edge Makers Market will again be staged within Mill City Grill for fun, crafty, artsy finds and The Broadway Gallery will be hosting its monthly art reception. Also, don’t forget to pop inside The Merk to see what Jade Ann and others have. The Merk has wonderful stores within! Monthly Longview Downtowner’s Meetings Anyone interested in our events, promotion, preservation, partnership and development of Downtown Longview are welcome to join our monthly meetings. Join us Oct. 17 at 8 a.m. at the Creekside Café and/or 3 p.m. upstairs at Mill City Grill. We will be discussing the upcoming Trick or Treat Downtown event, Small Business Saturday, holiday decorations, annual Christmas parade, Jingle all the Way and more! This is a great networking opportunity. Also, we’re just a lot of fun! Trick or Treat! We would like to invite everyone to Trick or Treat Downtown Longview Oct. 26 from 2 to 4 p.m. Get the most out of those costumes and go business by business to see downtown and get some candy! This event is such a feel-good time for everyone, businesses and families alike! Save the Date Small Business Saturday will be Nov. 30 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. We are looking forward to making this event even bigger and even better! Downtown Longview Business Spotlight Body Rock Dance Space located at 1317 Hemlock St. is Longview’s first drop-in dance studio for adults. If you have never danced but know you have some swagger or you are an advanced student who misses a dance class, Body Rock Dance Space offers a place where you can learn some sweet moves to some rad tunes. Classes are always the same, every week, and you attend when it works best for your schedule. Check them out on Facebook @bodyrockdancespace. Follow Downtown Longview on Facebook and Instagram @downtownlongviewwa to keep up with all our businesses, news and events.

Banking made easy

October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | 19

Our Current Project

Renaud Electic is moving into the Searing Building. They have hired Mountain View Commercial Contracting to do all the improvements. Searing closed its doors after nearly 50 years and another long time Longview business, Renaud Electric, is moving from its location of more than 55 years to the Searing location. Mountain View Commercial Contracting is doing all the construction necessary to make that transition a smooth one.

Our Services

• ADA Compliance Surveys • Construction Documents • Specifications • Value Engineering • Construction Planning • Build Site Analysis • Design Build • Site Research

• Ground Up Construction • Tenant Improvement • Cost Estimating • Site Development • Remodeling • Space Planning • Program Management • Building Master Planning

We love what we do!

Our builders come to work smiling and ready to build your dream. They have a passion for their work and are qualified to build your design.

Dan Frazier Owner

Licensed & Bonded

360-749-3107 mtvcontracting.com 199 Rocky Point Road, Kelso WA 98626 MOUNTVC853D6


Fri., Jan. 24, 4 pm - 9 pm and Sat., Jan. 25, 10 am - 8 pm

Cowlitz County Convention Center


Mount St Helens Event Sponsor $10,000

Logo on all marketing material as sQuatch Fest Sponsored by “Your Business Name” Named on all radio, print and social media advertising 10' x 10' booth space at the event Logo on website, Facebook, newsletter and print advertising 100 collectible tickets to event with lanyards

Hoffstadt Bluff Sponsor $2,500 • Logo on marketing material & social media • 25 tickets to attend both days • Display banner and booth space at event

Hoffstadt Bluff Sponsor Options • Cornhole Tournament - Battle of the Borders D Kids’ Cave CalPortland • Kids’ Cave -Slogo OLon • Tickets - logo on back of tickets • Brew Mtn Beer Fest - S banner OLDin beer fest Life Mortgage D • Mug SponsorS-O logo L on mug Hop-N-Grape • Decorations - banner in MSH room • Speaker Sponsor - banner on stage

Ape Cave Sponsor $500 • Logo on print ads • Exposure on social media • 5 tickets to sQuatch Fest Ape Cave Sponsor Options • Drink tokenS- O logo on token MiLL CiTY GRiLL LD • Wristband - logoSon Antidote Tap House D OLwristband • ICE Sponsor

Columbia River Sponsor $1,000

• • • •

Logo on print ads, mention on social media Banner displayed at event 10 tickets to sQuatch Fest Vendor table

Columbia River Sponsor Options • Volunteer T-shirts S - logo on back JSquared OLD • Wine GlassesS- O logo LDon glass The Office 842 • Stage - banner on stage • Friday Night Speaker Dinner

Elk Meadow Sponsor $250 • Supporter of sQuatch Fest • Logo on print ads • 2 tickets to sQuatch Fest

Don’t delay! Register now for these sponsor opportunities!

Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce 105 N. Minor Rd Kelso, WA 98626 (360) 423-8400 www.kelsolongviewchamber.org

Ribbon Cuttings

Cutting Edge Axecuiters–Shylah Varner and owners Kelly and Shaun Godden–capitalizes on the latest trend and Longview's logging history.

See more photos on the Chamber’s Facebook page or click here.

22 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

Ribbon Cuttings

SlapShot and a SweetSpot SlapShot USA celebrated its grand opening, while the SweetSpot celebrated eight years in business. Congratulations to the SweetSpot's Debbie Sweet and Sharon Gibb.

October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | 23

2019 January 15: Specialty Rents February 12: Port of Longview March 12: Business and Tourism Expo April 9: Three Rivers Christian School May 14: Lifeworks June 11: Antidote July 9: Three Rivers Eye Center August 13: Mary’s Bar & Grill September 11: Silver Star October 8: Steele Chapel November 12: Stewart Title December 10: Holiday Mixer

Workforce Southwest Washington Darcy Hoffman Director of Business Services

Workforce Southwest Washington Building a Skilled Workforce for Cowlitz County Business Manufacturing is the largest sector in Cowlitz County, employing

stated finding work was difficult due to travel expenses and limited

6,606 workers. Healthcare and social assistance is the next-largest

childcare availability, and that full-time employment opportunities

sector with 6,590 workers, followed by construction which employs

were nonexistent. At the same time, nearby high-growth, high-de-

approximately 3,000 workers. Healthcare and construction will ex-

mand companies report having difficulty recruiting and retaining a

perience the most job growth in the next year

local workforce.

In addition, the transportation and warehousing sector, averaging

More than 4,000 working age adults residing in the South Kelso

the highest wages in Cowlitz County at more than $100,000 annu-

and Highland’s neighborhoods are unemployed or underemployed,

ally, will add 214 jobs over the next year.

according to a 2013-2017 American Community Survey. This is an

These are some of our region’s high-growth sectors and are project-

opportunity for business leaders to tap an untapped talent pool.

ed to have large numbers of job openings in the next year and into

Residents of these two neighborhoods will, over the course of the

the future. These key sectors are where Workforce Southwest Wash-

next three years, be trained, supported and placed into many of these

ington (WSW), the local workforce development board for Cowlitz,

high-growth, high-demand jobs with Cowlitz County businesses.

Wahkiakum and Clark counties, invests much of its funding to train

With the support and investment of WSW and a network of com-

workers to meet the growing demands of our local businesses for

munity-based organizations, we will develop a pipeline of skilled

skilled talent. These investments help people get good-paying jobs or

workers to meet Cowlitz County’s persistent need for talent.

advance in their careers and help businesses recruit, train and retain employees. All of this contributes to the growth and development of our regional economy.

Modeled after a successful business-driven job retention program out of Michigan, WSW is investing in employee engagement and retention (EER) experts who will be available to support existing and

In today’s tight labor market, while businesses struggle to recruit

newly hired employees. EERs will serve as an extension of company

new talent and retain existing employees, where will the more than

human resources departments and will work with employees to help

1,900 new and replacement workers come from that are needed to

address obstacles to job retention and career advancement such as

meet the demand for these four critical industries?

transportation, access to housing resources, financial literacy and

WSW applied for and was recently awarded state funding to help

budgeting, childcare, and skills training – to name a few.

residents in the South Kelso and Highland’s neighborhoods become

Are you a business leader in Cowlitz County struggling to hire and

employed, advance in their careers, and increase their earnings.

retain skilled talent? Do you have insight as to the types of skills

Resident focus groups convened during the grant planning process

and experience employees in your organization need to be successful? Would additional professional or technical skills training benefit your business by putting your current workforce on a track to advance in their job responsibilities and wages? Businesses in manufacturing, healthcare, construction and transportation are encouraged to contact Alyssa Joyner, senior project manager at WSW, to share their hiring needs so that we can prepare

1157 3rd Avenue, Suite 218 1157 Longview, 3rd Avenue, WA Suite 98632 218 1157 3rd360.952.3100 Avenue, Suite 218 Longview, WA 98632 Longview, WA 98632 www.amadaseniorcare.com 360.952.3100

360.952.3100 www.amadaseniorcare.com www.amadaseniorcare.com

this untapped talent pool for careers in your organization.

Darcy Hoffman is the Director of Business Services at Workforce Southwest Washington. Reach her at dhoffman@workforcesw.org or 360-608-4949. October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection 25


fo s u n oi


Business After Hours Hosted by Steele Chapel at

5050 Mt. Solo Rd., Longview October 8, 2019 5:30 to 7:30 pm $15 in advance - $20 at the door Register at www.kelsolongviewchamber.org Tour the new crematory Get into the Halloween spirit and get your photo with the Grim Reaper Enjoy food and drinks by Summerland Win great raffle prizes

Business After Hours

Shining Star Katey and Mike Truesdell at Silver Star Sports Bar and Grill with winner Melissa Parcel. Thank you to the Silver Star for hosting September Business After Hours. Above, Kelly Godden, Marlene Johanson and Pam Fierst.

See more photos on the Chamber’s Facebook page or click here.

October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | 27

New Members Add your business to our growing membership – Call 360-423-8400 Today!

Axecutioner Kelly Godden 1170 15th Ave. Longview, WA 98632 360-636-3632 kelly@specialtyrents.com

Double Trouble Guide Service Blair Johnson and Joel Booth 141 W. Canyon View Dr. Longview, WA 98632 360-562-2179 doubletroubleguideservice@gmail.com

Business Association with opportunities to promote

• Membership Directory

trade through Chamber socials,

• Tax Deduction

special events and committee participation.

• Newsletter

• Annual Meeting and Banquet

• Business Card Display

• Networking Events

• Use of Chamber Logo

• Committee Participation • Business Contacts • Quarterly Membership Meetings

Representation through action committees, candidate forums and up-to-date action alerts.

• Civic Representation

• Legislative Representation

• Monthly Business After Hours

• Issues Tracking and Information • Task Forces

Business Services include marketing for your business,

• Candidate Forums

referrals and access to Chamber

• Legislative Update Breakfast

publications and research data.

• Demographics Publication

• Mailing Labels • Membership Window Decals • Member Referrals • Ribbon Cutting • Website Links • Member to Member Discounts 28 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

Packages Basic Membership Package – $275 or $26 per month. Bronze Membership Package – $500 or $46.66 per month. Silver Membership Package – $1,000 or $86.33 per month. Gold Membership Package – $2,500 or $211.33 per month. Platinum Membership Package – $5,000 or $416.66 per month. Diamond Club Membership Package – $10,000 or $834 per month. Nonprofit Package – $180 or $18 per month.

Welcome Back!

The Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce would like to give a SHOUT OUT and a big THANK YOU to the following loyal members for renewing their partnership with us.

Anderson & Anderson Advisory, LLC Better Business Bureau C's Photography Cowlitz Economic Development Council Cowlitz Indian Tribe Epson Portland, Inc. Erickson Glass Company Fibre Federal Credit Union – Castle Rock Branch Fibre Federal Credit Union – Kelso Branch Fibre Federal Credit Union – Ocean Beach Branch Fibre Federal Credit Union – West Kelso Branch Fibre Federal Credit Union – Woodland Branch Guesthouse Inn and Suites Kellogg Supply, Inc. Lower Columbia Economic Development Council Motion Industries, Inc. Mount St. Helens Creation Information Center Pathways 2020 Prestige Senior Living Monticello Park Progress Center Red Lion Hotel and Conference Center Sessions Plumbing and Heating, Inc. Three Rivers Christian School – High School Campus U.S. Cellular Weyerhaeuser October 2019 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | 29

Chamber Connection

David Lamb and Kelly Godden talk about the Coats for Kids event happening at J Squared Barrel House.

See more photos on the Chamber’s Facebook page or click here.

Enchanted Evening Jenine, Jamie and Larry with Stageworks Northwest Theatre talk about the opening of "Some Enchanted Evening."

Mindy Pleasure and Laurie Severson with Lower Columbia College Head Start.

“Your Chamber Connection“ EVERY Wednesday

Stream live at www.kedoam.com Local guest and current events 30 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

Hosts of the Show: Carey Mackey, Red Canoe Credit Union; Karen Sisson, Stewart Title; Shawn Green, ServPro Longview/Kelso and Marc Silva, Columbia Bank . Would you like an opportunity to be on Your Chamber Connection or to have more information about the qualifications of an open house or ribbon cutting? Contact Bill or Amy at the Chamber 360-423-8400

FAMILY FUN RUN he Friday, December 13, 2019 t e v Sa te! The Civic Circle in Longview Da

Festive Sponsorship Levels Grand Bell: $1,000 Logo on all marketing materials, website, advertising, radio ads, large logo on shirt, banner at event (provided by Sponsor), promo item inside runner’s packets, and six (6) free registrations

Gold Bell: $500 Logo on all marketing materials, website, advertising, medium logo on shirt, promo item inside runner’s packets, and four (4) free registrations

Silver Bell: $250 Logo on all marketing materials, website, advertising, logo on shirt, promo item inside runner’s packets, and two (2) free registrations

Bronze Bell: $100 Logo on shirt, promo item inside runner’s packets

YES! I WOULD LIKE TO BE A SPONSOR! NAME: ________________________________________ SPONSOR LEVEL: _______________________________



September Ambassador of the Month Marlene Johanson Red Canoe Credit Union

Chamber Recognizes Time and Dedication Once again, Marlene Johanson, business service manager for Red Canoe Credit Union, has earned the Chamber’s Ambassador of the Month honor. In addition to her numerous times named Ambassador of the Month, Marlene is also the Chamber’s 2018 Ambassador of the Year recipient. “Marlene has been as an Ambassador with the Chamber for many years and we very much appreciate the time she puts into volunteering with us including being on the Chamber board, the Lower Columbia Professionals and the many subcommittees,” said Chamber Project Manager Amy Hallock. “Marlene is always up for an adventure as she loves to spend time with family and friends outdoors camping, hiking and her new favorite kayaking. Marlene, thank you for all that you do for the Chamber and our community to make it a great place to live, work and play. You are so appreciated!” Chamber Ambassadors, known as the Red Coats, are an integral part of the Chamber of Commerce. The Ambassador team is made up of ac-

tive Chamber volunteers whose responsibilities include meeting and greeting at Chamber events, welcoming new members and assisting at ribbon cuttings and community events. Ambassadors juggle busy professional careers while making time to assist the Chamber at a variety of events year long. If you would be interested in wearing a red coat and representing the Chamber, contact CEO Bill Marcum at the Chamber office.

FAMILY FUN RUN e Friday, December 13, 2019 h t e Sav te! The Civic Circle in Longview Da

32 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | October 2019

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Kelso-Longview Business Connection monthly newsletter is published the first of each month, posted electronically on our website and over 6,400 emailed to local business professionals, city and county officials. To be included in this monthly email, call the Chamber office at 360-423-8400.

th each mon

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All ads include full color and any design work. Deadline is the 21st of the month prior to publication. Digital files: PDF is preferred. JPEG accepted at high resolution(at least 300 dpi). Non-Members of the Kelso-Longview Chamber of Commerce, please add 30% to above rates. To advertise or request additional information please contact Amy Hallock at 360-423-8400 or ahallock@kelsolongviewchamber.org or CEO Bill Marcum at 360-423-8400 or bmarcum@kelsolongviewchamber.org

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