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for a Building economic prosperity requires a solid game plan, one that anticipates change on the horizon. It calls for a roadmap, a master plan for success. To help Tucson realize its economic prowess, Tucson Regional Economic Opportunities – or TREO – in 2007 created its Economic Blueprint to guide development efforts in the region. The 300-page analysis of Tucson’s assets established a framework for private and public sectors to work together to build prosperity, target industries that can shape our future and establish priorities. But much has changed in the region – and in the world – in the last seven years, and TREO is crafting a Blueprint Update to accelerate development efforts in this new economy. What’s different this time? The original blueprint helped TREO to identify the area’s economic drivers, strengths and gaps, while the update will focus on how to best leverage emerging opportunities, according to TREO leadership. The Blueprint Update will build on what has worked with the goal of shoring up areas where progress is still lacking. Committees made up of leaders from private, public and non-profit sectors – armed with input from the community – are studying the issues critical in build70 BizTucson


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ing the economy, and are developing an action plan for optimizing success. Perhaps the greatest challenge to future prosperity lies in identifying and supplying the pipeline of human talent required to meet today’s business demand. It’s a daily concern for some local employers.

Today and in the future, the availability of skilled labor at all levels will drive all market decisions. –

Joe Snell, President & CEO, TREO

Judy Rich, president and CEO of TMC Healthcare, said finding that human talent is critical to Tucson’s success. “As an employer of 3,300 people, I am always concerned about the availability of qualified candidates for our business,” she said. “Talent and workforce development are key components in building our local and regional economy.” Philip Tedesco, CEO of Tucson As-

sociation of Realtors, said the region is currently unable to meet the demand for skilled labor. “When companies are considering moving to the region, access to a skilled labor pool is a critically important part of the decision-making process,” he said. Joe Snell, TREO president and CEO, said strengthening our competitiveness is the main focus of the Blueprint Update. The updated Blueprint will take a “bold and bigger approach” by redefining the concept of “region” and how we will meet market needs, Snell said, which is critical for Arizona to compete in a global economy. At the annual TREO luncheon last fall, it was noted that there are about 150 key markets around the world, and that Arizona competes with about 75 of those “megapolitan” markets that are attracting successful economic enterprise. While Arizona historically has not embraced the concept of marketing shared assets, the rebranding of the region as the Sun Corridor – from Flagstaff south to the border at Nogales – is critical for Arizona’s success in a global market, business leaders contend. “How Arizona goes about proving that it has the means to meet the supply needed lies in redefining the market in the Sun Corridor, and not as individual

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