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T H E M O N T H LY B U S I N E S S S E C T I O N F O R L I N N A N D B E N T O N C O U N T I E S A N D T H E M I D - W I L L A M E T T E VA L L E Y •

September 2012

Tom Nelson, economic development manager, is shown in his office in City Hall recently. ANDY CRIPE | MID-VALLEY INBUSINESS

Bringing in economic success Tom Nelson begins as Corvallis’ economic development manager MID-VALLEY InBUSINESS


om Nelson, 59, is starting his second week as the city of Corvallis’ economic development manager. In this interview with Mid-Valley InBusiness conducted last week, Nelson talks about his goals in his new job, the challenges that he’s facing and prospects for regional cooperation on economic issues. Mid-Valley InBusiness: It seems that adding to the degree of difficulty in your job in Corvallis is that there are some segments of the community that are, at best, ambivalent about the entire idea of economic development. How do you work around that? Tom Nelson: I do think that the Corvallis community as a whole is more engaged (than other communities I’ve worked with) in decision making. I use that as a win and say,“OK, if you’re interested in this, come tell me how we can develop this community in a positive way, where we can have a better economic standing than we do now.”And we listen and we get those ideas. Are we going to implement everything that we hear? Obviously not. But we will hopefully be able to gather information and recruit people to a common vision. InBusiness: To the extent possible. Nelson: To the extent possible. (He holds up a copy of the economic development plan from the Corvallis Economic Development Commission.) You know, this is my game plan. This is always my fallback (position) to anyone who says,“Well, you should be doing this instead.” Until the Economic Development Commission and the city manager tell me to do something different, this is what I’m going to be doing. InBusiness: The expectations that Corvallis has for this position are extraordinarily high. What don’t people understand about economic development and the people who work in this kind of job? Nelson: Economic development is not just business development. Economic development includes development of community. … (And there’s) something (else) that some people don’t understand about economic development. They don’t understand that for communities in Oregon with our tax system, a success is bringing in a business that is going to increase the total assessed value in a community because that’s how we pay our bills, that’s how we can develop. Not only do they supply jobs but they supply that investment in community. And I think that we have some pretty good ideas about what kind of businesses we want to have. InBusiness: What sort of advantages does Corvallis have in terms of economic development? Nelson: Corvallis is blessed with a lot of property. Many, many communities in the state don’t have the significant amount of property that Corvallis has, so there’s room for good development. Another thing that Corvallis is blessed with is the university and the research that comes out of the university. I think that there’s also opportunity for investment in business development in the SEE NELSON | A7

Finding locations for business in the proper zoned areas of Albany is a key to John Pascone’s success. MARK YLEN MID-VALLEY INBUSINESS

John Pascone shares development experience MID-VALLEY InBUSINESS


ohn Pascone is the president of the Albany-Millersburg Economic Development Corp., a position he’s held since 1997. He has 35 years of experience working with companies of all sizes, and also has started and owned several businesses of his own. For 19 years, he worked as a business advocate and counselor through the Linn-Benton Community College Business Development Center. He’s known Tom Nelson, the new economic development manager for the city of Corvallis, for years. In this interview, conducted last week, Pascone offered some advice to his old colleague and reflected on some of the lessons he’s learned about economic development.

Mid-Valley InBusiness: You’ve been working with economic development issues, with AMEDC and other organizations, for decades. In your experience, what are some of the things people just don’t understand about economic development? John Pascone: Well, a lot of people think economic development is community development. … My job as I see it is job creation, and it’s manufacturing and traded sector jobs because that brings money in from the outside. Retail jobs just circulate within a community. Manufacturing and traded sector jobs bring money in from the outside. That’s what you’d like, to ship your goods and services outside your community and bring dollars in. InBusiness: If you were starting in Corval-

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lis as the economic development manager, would part of your strategy be to try to turn down expectations a bit? Pascone: Well, you’d certainly have to set the tone for what economic development is. Corvallis has not been known for embracing business, so you have to set the stage for the fact that jobs are wealth. Traded sector jobs represent additional wealth. Manufacturing jobs pay higher wage levels than other sectors of the economy and so manufacturing and traded sector jobs are really important. Now, all jobs are important. But if as a community you’re going to focus on certain sectors or ways to make your community better off, you want to focus on jobs that raise everybody’s boat. SEE PASCONE | A6






Corvallis entrepreneur Patti McCarthy pours a glass of wine in an original Wine Bra outside her home Friday afternoon.

Hands-free party glasses Wine Bras offer support for tipsy glassware By MARIA L. KIRKPATRICK rash — Oops. Pop — There goes another one. The sound of shattering glass punctuates many a wine walk as people attempt to balance glasses and finger foods while browsing shelves. Corvallis resident Patti McCarthy is on a mission to put an end to these party fouls and to outfit revelers with their own handsfree wine glass holders. McCarthy reconfigures bras — yes, lacy, satiny lingerie — to create her wine glass holders. Working with bra cups and straps, she decorates the underwear into colorful art pieces that can accommodate everything from a champagne glass to a double D margarita goblet. She makes a feminine version with the lacy back strap and uses the plain shoulder straps for a more masculine option. McCarthy has been creating her glass holders for about eight years. She attends many events that involve wine, including outdoor concerts and wine and food festivals, and said that without fail someone knocks over their glass or it spills on uneven ground. “Either people are trying to set down their glass on the grass, and it falls over or they are trying to hold their glass and a purse and get to the food and they drop the glass,” she said. “It can become a big deal to not spill.” Her glass holder acts as a sling and hangs freely from a person’s neck. The padded, underwire bra she uses in the creation is slit to allow for a glass stem to pass through and the glass to nestle inside. McCarthy has sold several wine cups from around her own neck at events when people see them in operation. The idea came to her one day while she was bored and looking at a pile of her bras. While spending time with her mother, who was in a nursing home, McCarthy played with her idea and crafted a cup holder for her wheelchair-bound mother. “This way she didn’t have to hold her water or worry about it falling from her lap,” McCarthy said. The contraption caught on and soon McCarthy was making holders for other residents and employees at the nursing home. A single mother to three young men, McCarthy always is a bit surprised at what men will wear – but she says many men find it fun to wear the wine cup. Her own sons do

September 2012



A wine glass rests in an original Wine Bra with a Beavers theme Friday afternoon. not wear the device, although they do support her venture. “It’s the only time a man can wear a bra out in public, and it’s OK,” McCarthy said. McCarthy has a patent on her idea and sells the glass holders as fast as she can make them. Holiday themed holders sell the best, she said. Christmas is a big seller with cups adorned with lights and bells. Pink bras sporting the breast cancer ribbon are popular. Beavers and Ducks fans also purchase the slings in their favorite colors. McCarthy purchases the pretty bras she uses from local retailers. It takes her about an hour to craft a basic design and she sells them for $20 and up. Rhinestones, ribbons, bows and flowers take longer and go for more. One customer was so intent to have a specific wine cup holder that she paid $75 to buy it on the spot from McCarthy’s neck. It is her hope to one day just make the wine cups but for now McCarthy also works as a traveling dental assistant and sells Mary Kay. Two of her sons are grown up and on their own and the third is completing high school. Before she can focus on the wine cup, she has to find a better bulk source for the bras. She also needs a seamstress that can sew faster than she can before she increases production. For now, she handles business on a small scale and sells at events she attends.

Patti McCarthy measures success by the cupful and has these five keys to success to share from her own experience: 1. Product. Find a product that is unique and something people can use.“I always hear that this is such a unique idea,” McCarthy said.“It’s not for everyone but there are several groups that really go for what the wine cup can do.“ 2. Get a patent. “I tried not to sell a lot of these until I had a patent in place,” McCarthy said. 3. Promotion. How much will you have to do to promote your product. Look at the product and see if it will sell itself without explanation. 4. Set the price. Don’t charge too little. It’s your own time and effort going into making something that is important to you. 5. Know the place where you will sell your product. McCarthy knows she can sell her wine cups at wine tastings and outdoor venues that serve beverages. Next, she aims to get them into vineyard gift shops.

‘It’s the only time a man can wear a bra out in public, and it’s OK.’ PATTI MCCARTHY

Monday: Lebanon Area Chamber of Commerce Forum Lunch, Speaker: Oregon State Treasurer Ted Wheeler. Time: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Samaritan Lebanon Community Hospital Training Center, 525 N. Santiam Highway, Lebanon. Cost: $13. Information: call 541258-7164. Tuesday: Hiring event, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., T-Mobile Salem Call Center, 4080 27th Court S.E., Salem. Applicants are encouraged to attend, and will be able to tour the facility, receive information on the application and assessment process and an overview of benefits, and have the opportunity to interview onsite. Information: Tuesday and Wednesday: “Guided Tour of QuickBooks,” 2 to 3:50 p.m., Room F-202, Forum building, Linn-Benton Community College, 6500 Pacific Blvd. S.W., Albany. For those with no previous experience in using a computer-based accounting system. Cost: $69. Registration: LBCC Business, Healthcare and Workforce Division, 541-917-4923. Tuesday: “Pulse of the Market,” 6:30 p.m., Illahe Country Club, 3376 Country Club Drive S., Salem. Sponsored by Haven Financial Group. Oppenheimer Funds Pacific Northwest Region Vice President Jerry Fraustro will speak on conditions in equity and bond markets, and offer viewpoints on the current Eurozone debt crisis. Information: 503-585-0009. Wednesday: Albany Area Chamber of Commerce Membership Forum Luncheon: “From Albany to Mount Everest and Back.” Speaker: Craig Hanneman, former NFL and OSU football player and Willamette Industries employee. Time: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Linn County Fair & Expo Center, 3700 Knox Butte Road S.E., Albany. Cost: $13 members; $20 non-members. Information: Call 541-926-1517. Wednesday: Albany Area Chamber of Commerce Business Extravaganza. Time: 1 to 6:30 p.m., Linn County Fair & Expo Center, 3700 Knox Butte Road S.E., Albany. Free to the public. Vendors should contact the chamber for rate information. Info: 541-812-6076. Wednesday: “Women in Business: Best Practices for Creating a Balanced Life,” noon, 101 at Big River, 101 N.W. Jackson Ave. Business owner Kristina Ender will present a collection of best practices for getting it all done, plus a simple process for discerning what’s working for you, what’s not, and knowing when to let go of a practice because it doesn’t fit you. Sponsored by Central Willamette Credit Union. Cost: $15 for members, including lunch; $20 for nonmembers, including lunch; $5 for members, without lunch. Registration: Wednesday: Real estate pre-license examination course, 6 to 9 p.m. on 11 Wednesdays, starting this week, plus 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, Linn-Benton Community College, 6500 Pacific Blvd. S.W., Albany. The course is the fastest way to qualify to take the state exam. Cost: $695. Information: 541-917-4927 or barbie.dubois Wednesday: Solarize MidValley workshop, 6 p.m., Albany Public Library, 2450 14th Ave. S.E. Sponsored by the Salem Creative Network. Education on installing solar energy on residential properties through a bulk purchasing pro-

gram. Information: 503-5512818. Thursday: “Getting Things Done When You’re Not in Charge,” 8 a.m. to noon, Room CC-211, Calapooia Center, LinnBenton Community College, 6500 Pacific Blvd. S.W., Albany. The workshop will focus on how any individual in an organization can get things done, whether or not they are in charge. Topics include networking, using your “reflected glory” and leading from where you are. Cost: $79, or $69 per person for three or more from one company. Registration: LBCC Business and Employer Services, 541-917-4923. Thursday: Solarize Mid-Valley workshop, 6 p.m., boardroom, Corvallis-Benton County Public Library, 645 N.W. Monroe Ave. See Wednesday entry. Saturday: “Gleaning from the Forest: Non-Timber Forest Product Opportunities,” 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Bauman Family Tree Farm, 84289 Territorial Highway, Eugene. Participants will learn how to conduct a nontimber product inventory, encourage growth of species of interest, and visit an area specialty forest products business to learn about marketing, labor and equipment requirements. Cost: $15. Details and registration: 541-344-5859 or http://extension.oregon Saturday: Continuing education workshop for licensed massage therapists, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Room NSH-106, North Santiam Hall, Linn-Benton Community College, 6500 Pacific Blvd. S.W., Albany. A head, neck and jaw workshop. Cost: $125. Registration: LBCC Business and Employer Services, 541-917-4923. October: Linn-Benton Community College Small Business Management Program. For those who have been in business for a year and are looking to increase profits. Learn how to focus your business plan, improve marketing and manage finances more efficiently. Includes one classroom session each month and oneon-one business coaching starting in October. Cost: $695. Registration: LBCC Small Business Development Center, 541-9174929. Friday, Oct. 5: Linn-Benton Community College professional development class: “Difficult Workplace Conversations”. Time: 8 a.m. to noon, LBCC Benton Center, Room 204, 757 N.W. Polk Ave., Corvallis. Cost: $79 per person or $69 each for three or more from one company. Info: Call 541-917-4923. Friday, Oct. 5: Business Luncheon: “Social Media and Your Business.” Speaker: Karen Davis, senior employment attorney, Vigilent. Time: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Central Willamette Community Credit Union, 7101 Supra Drive S.W., Albany. Cost $15, chamber members; $20 non-members. Info: Melanie Place, 541-812-8668. Tuesday, Oct. 9: Lebanon Women In Business Luncheon. Speaker: Former Oregon Gov. Barbara Roberts. Time: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., The River Center, 3000 Santiam Highway, Lebanon. Cost: $14 per person. Info: 541-258-7164. Wednesday, Oct. 10: Albany Area Chamber of Commerce Young Professionals Lunch: “Controlling Workplace Clutter.” Speaker: Kristin Bertilson, Queen B Organizing. Time: 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m., Phoenix Inn Suites, 3410 Spicer Drive S.E., Albany. Cost: $15 chamber members; $20 nonmembers. Info: Call 541-926-1517.

Pascone Continued from page A5

InBusiness:As you look at Corvallis making the move to bring in economic development into the halls of City Hall, does that open up some possibilities for increased regional cooperation on economic issues throughout the mid-valley? Pascone: I think the two mayors of the communities have explored this regional effort. It’s a good idea. We are selling the region. If a company locates in Corvallis or Albany or Lebanon, we all are affected, we all (benefit). People will commute across the valley for jobs. I mean, at one point, HP was the biggest employer in Lebanon. So people will live where they live and commute to the jobs. It is a joint effort. And we’ve always cooperated. I don’t think there’s ever been a project where we’ve really competed (against) one or the other. … InBusiness: Do you have any specific advice for Tom Nelson as he starts his job in Corvallis? Pascone: Well, I think he needs to go back to the basics of economic development because a lot of people don’t know what eco-

nomic development is. It’s job creation and community prosperity through good jobs.You help grow local businesses.You help start local businesses. If you’re going to do recruiting, that’s important, but the community needs to figure out how they’re going to track recruitment. … InBusiness:You’ve got to be open to recruiting opportunities when they arise,but in terms of bang for the buck,recruiting is always going to be a little bit of a long shot. Pascone: In the old days, you’d

spend a lot of time on these (recruiting) proposals, but the biggest bang for the buck comes from working with your local businesses. InBusiness: Is that the most satisfying part of the job? Pascone: Yeah, I think so. You get to know the business owners. These people have really good ideas, they’re hard workers. … So it’s really important to find those business owners who can use a hand, starting up and growing.

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September 2012

B US I N ES S DATA June 2012

July 2012

11.8 9.1

8.2 8.3



10.8 11.1

8.5 8.7 6.8 6.1 6.3

Benton Co.


Linn Co.

Source: Oregon Employment Department Note: Data are seasonally adjusted.


July 2011 16% 14% 12% 10% 8% 6% 4% 2% 0

325 300 275 250 225 200 175 150 125

Units sold past year

Average sales prices

Average sales price

Aug. 2012

Aug. 2011

Aug. 2012

Aug. 2011

429 116 21 463

271,628 Benton County Linn County




Units sold past year

Units sold past year

454 121 20 530



156,887 235,294 198,545 291,394

149,608 236,664 146,726 268,395



Aug. 2012

Independence Jefferson Lebanon Philomath Sweet Home

69 43 293 79 135

Units sold past year

Aug. 2011

50 60 285 81 136

Average sales prices

Aug. 2012

149,663 166,498 142,504 230,900 131,234


Average sales price

Aug. 2011

221,111 203,193 135,211 248,114 114,165

Source: Willamette Valley Multiple Listing Service

U O I N D E X O F EC O N O M I C I N D I CATO RS The numbers: The University of Oregon Index of Economic Indicators fell 0.7 percent in July to 90.9 (1997=100), continuing the decline noted in June. The good news: Not much in July, said the report’s author, Timothy Duy of the University of Oregon Department of Economics, although he did note that much of the weakness will be temporary. Residential building permits were up, from 824 to 852. The weight-distance tax, a measure of trucking activity, held steady. The bad news: All the other components in the index were weaker. They include initial unemployment claims, which rose, and employment service payrolls (typically temp-service firms), which were down.

trouble spots still linger, he said, notably a cooling global economy and uncertainty about U.S. fiscal policy in 2013. Another view: Duy’s other index, the Oregon Measure of Economic Activity, also fell in July, from minus 0.66 in June to minus 1.03. (In this index, a measure of zero matches the average growth rate from 1990 onward, so a reading under zero means the economy is growing at a below-average rate.) However, Duy said, the July numbers were influenced by a labor dispute that disrupted activity at the Port of Portland and so the decline should be temporary. To learn more: Check out the full report at this website: oefweb/

Index, 1997 = 100 92 91 90 89

tions throughout the credit union’s five-county field of membership. Among the destinations for The Boys & Girls Club of these computer donations were Corvallis has elected its 2012Home Life, Inc., CASA of Benton 13 board of directors and offiCounty, the Corvallis Environcers. Officers are board president Scott Jackson, president- mental Center, the Philomath Youth Activities Center, Benton elect Steve Redman, treasurer/secretary Steve Zander, fa- Hospice Service, The Arc of Benton County, Heartland Hucilities chair Barte Starker, finance chair Steve Zander, and mane Society and Strengthening Rural Families. advancement chair Dave OSU Federal is a memberHenslee. Directors are Kevin owned, not-for-profit communiBogatin, Zak Hansen, Rosco Huebner, Bre Kerkvliet, Carol ty credit union open to anyone who lives, works or attends Kronstad, Lacie LaRue, Jim school in Benton, Lincoln, Linn, Luebke, Bill Mercer, Karen Misfeldt, Spencer Newell, Bri- Marion or Polk counties. an Robertson, Ryan Sparks, CenturyLink Kate Sundstrom and Scott Travelstead. The Boys & Girls employees gather food Club provides after-school enEmployees of CenturyLink richment and academic programs for thousands of school- Inc. and the company’s local communities collected 106,275 age youth for nearly 300 days actual pounds of food and per year. $271,900 in the 2012 CentuFeed the Children BackSamaritan welcomes ryLink pack Buddies Food Drive, which Fallows to Corvallis took place in June in about 650 Samaritan Mental Health in company locations across the country. The contributions inCorvallis recluded a $1 million national docently welnation from the CenturyLink comed neuClark M. Williams Foundation. ropsychologist Locally, 11,132.13 pounds of Robert Fallows food were collected to benefit to its growing Linn Benton Food Share. team of mental

Boys & Girls Club elects officers

Source: Willamette Valley Multiple Listing Service

Mid-Valley Residential Report

Albany N. Albany Brownsville Corvallis


Residential Average Sales Price by Area

Unemployment Rate


health professionals. Fallows Fallows 88 received a bachelor’s de87 gree in psychology from Arizona State University in Tempe, and a 86 master’s degree and doctoral Feb. ’12 March ’12 April ’12 May ’12 June ’12 July ’12 degree in clinical psychology from Argosy University in Phoenix. He completed an inNondefense nonaircraft capi- summers, Duy said, but he ternship at VA North Texas tal orders declined, as did con- noted that in neither case did Health Care System in Dallas the softness evolve into recessumer confidence. The interand a postdoctoral residency in sion. And he said that the inest rate spread narrowed. neuropsychology at South The upshot: The summer’s dex is 3.3 percent higher over Texas Veterans Health Care Systhe past six months, an indicadata show some of the same tem in San Antonio. As a neution of continued growth. But softness seen in the past two ropsychologist, Fallows works with individuals who experience neurological, medical and psychiatric difficulties. He has a special interest in the cognitive and psychological difficulties associated with dementia, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, stroke and tumors. Fallows is Continued from page A5 accepting new patients of all Nelson: I’ve gotten a great rearound the state, I’m going to be ning off) from the university, ages. For information about ception for the most part. There telling that story when we get to- start up here.” It’s going to take child and adolescent services, nurturing those relationships and are some people who really don’t call 541-768-4620, and for adult gether. believe in economic development services, call 541-768-5235. InBusiness: And you think you getting people to understand have the evidence in hand to con- that we’re serious. And then hav- as a positive thing, and they’ve spoken their mind. I beg to differ. OSU Federal donates ing the support of the council, vince those people to at least It’s what I do, and I’ve seen it the Economic Development take another look at Corvallis? 46 computers work so well to help communiNelson: Exactly. …. (But it’s go- Commission and ultimately the ties. A concentrated effort on ing to take more than just saying community to back it up. OSU Federal Credit Union InBusiness: How is the commu- economic development really to a company) “Hey, Company A, has distributed 46 computer stations over the past few nity reacting to you? What kind of helps communities’ livability, if we’ve changed, build here” or months to nonprofit organizayou do it right. reception are you getting? “Hey, Company B, you’re (spin-


community. … Here’s the thing that is going to change even the view of investment in Corvallis, and that’s that Corvallis is now serious about economic development. We have the commission, we have the strategy, we have the economic development staff. Investors who are even outside the community are going to take another look now and say “OK, they’re serious.” Let’s couple them with these ideas, this innovation that’s coming out of the university and all of a sudden, you have opportunities for startups and for expansion for the startups that already are out there. InBusiness: One of the issues with those investors … they might be people who might have the perception that it’s more difficult than it should be to do business in Corvallis. Regardless of whether that’s true, you still need to push back against that perception. Nelson: Definitely. Because I worked in the community or in the larger community working for Linn-Benton Community College for so many years, I saw the differences in perception – development perception, business perception, even shopping perception, Corvallis compared to Albany, Salem and surrounding areas. So it’s a big deal that the Corvallis leadership has taken these steps, and it’s not going unnoticed. Because I built a network of economic developers

Bank receives five-star rating Willamette Community Bank reports that it has received a “5-Star – Superior” rating from the bank rating agency Bauer Financial for the second quarter, ending June 30. It is the highest rating level awarded by Bauer Financial. Founded in 2003, Willamette Community Bank is headquartered in Albany and has a second office in Lebanon.

Sleep Center in Albany accredited Samaritan Sleep Center in Albany recently received program accreditation from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. To receive accreditation for a five-year period, a sleep center must meet or exceed all standards for professional health care as designated by the academy. These standards address core areas such as personnel, facility and equipment, policies and procedures, data acquisition, patient care, and quality assurance. The Samaritan Sleep Center is directed by Dr. Mark Reploeg, and is located at 950 29th Ave S.W. in Albany.

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In Business September 2012  

The monthly business section for Linn and Benton counties and the Mid-Willamette Valley

In Business September 2012  

The monthly business section for Linn and Benton counties and the Mid-Willamette Valley