2017 Issue 11
D e ve l o p , I n n ov a t e , P r o s p e r
Developing Oklahomaâ€™s Central Region Q&A with James Johnson Director, Regional Development Team p. 3
THE STATE OF INFORMATION Research Services
Commerce’s Research Team provides community leaders and businesses with powerful data and analyses for economic development and business growth.
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Increase revenue by attracting the right mix of retail to your community with our Business Analyst Reports powered by data from Esri. Target new businesses based on our localized gap and surplus analysis and identify the optimal business expansion locations based off traffic count profiles.
We have several free online tools and data products that are useful for governments and businesses. Visit okcommerce.gov/data for these and other tools.
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Supply Chain Reports Businesses need to know who their customers are and identify the most efficient and cost-effective suppliers. Our team gets to know your business to identify new opportunities for you. Reports are compiled from an industry analysis, surveys, Bloomberg Terminal review, and supply chain reviews of your peers and competitors.
Employer Data Get employment data on Oklahoma’s top companies and regular updates on publicly announced new and expanding businesses. Buildings & Sites Database LocateOK.com is Oklahoma’s statewide database of buildings and sites for sale or lease. Search properties including office, retail, and industrial along with available shovel-ready sites. Economic Data Download our Consumer Price Index Report with national and regional data on inflation and consumer prices. Maps & GIS Data Interactive maps and geographic search tools for available buildings and sites, Opportunity Zones, Enterprise Zones, Quality Jobs 5% areas and more.
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Developing Oklahoma’s Central Region Q&A with James Johnson, Commerce’s Regional Development Director We provide information to prospects on the workforce and flexibility of customized training. We work diligently with Oklahoma Employment Securities Commission in searching and sorting for company’s needs as well as organizing or participating in job fairs.
James Johnson, Director Regional Development Team James Johnson is the Regional Director for the Oklahoma Department of Commerce (Commerce) in Central Oklahoma. Johnson serves a seven-county region in Central Oklahoma and offices at Commerce headquarters. He’s worked for Commerce for 28 years, in that time he has worked as the Minority Business Director and Projects Director. Johnson’s knowledge and expertise help him to guide the Regional Development Team as they assist communities and businesses with their economic development goals. What are your major priorities in Central Oklahoma? Making sure that the communities are aware of the resources available to them. What are some of the biggest assets to your area? Labor force, world renowned higher education facilities and internationally recognized CareerTech system. What are the main industries in your area? Aviation and aerospace, energy, back office, weather and government. What are some of the largest companies in your area? • Boeing • Chesapeake • Continental Resources • Devon • Hobby Lobby • Paycom
What are some of the newest companies or business expansions in your area? In October, Amazon opened its first sorting center in the state in Oklahoma City. Mobile Medical Examination Inc. (MedXM) celebrated its grand opening last month as well. How does the Regional Team work to provide workforce solutions for companies? We provide information to prospects on the workforce and flexibility of customized training. We work diligently with Oklahoma Employment Securities Commission in searching and sorting for company’s needs as well as organizing or participating in job fairs. Prospective employers are also provided with labor surveys based on their needed occupational codes. What partnerships are vital to the area? The Greater Oklahoma City Partnership covers a 10-county region and mostly mirrors Commerce’s Central region. Their ability to leverage the capabilities of the region go a long way in present a robust network of services. Also the linkages to the regulatory bodies present help to promote Oklahoma as a business-friendly state. What services do you provide that communities should be more aware of? Distribution of request-for-proposals, information, identification of gap financing for capital projects, enhancement of community profiles.
Commerce Team Assists Local Oklahoma Company to Expand Seminole’s Blue Wave and Silver Wave Boats Manufacturer Looking to Grow It’s a great experience to help rural Oklahoma companies grow and expand. That is what Commerce is all about. ~ Charles Kimbrough, Director of Business Development for Commerce
Martin Roberts, business recruiter for Commerce and Phil Estes, managing member of Horizon Holdings, LLC Blue Wave Boats and Silver Wave Boats operate in a 42-acre, 165,000-sq-foot facility located in Seminole, Okla. The companies make fiberglass boats and pontoon boats in the same facility. Currently, it takes about 10-12 days to make a boat from scratch. The company is looking for opportunities to expand and integrate their supply chain to make the process even faster. The company employs more than 100 people in the Seminole community including gel coaters, laminators, skilled craftsman and is looking to grow to about 150 over the coming years. “Each boat is handcrafted with some of the world’s finest materials to be a world-class product,” says Richard Parks, co-owner of Blue Wave and Silver Wave Boats, “which will provide years of wonderful boating experiences for our customers.” “We are happy to be somewhere that people want you to be,” says Jim Shorin, managing member of Horizon Holdings, LLC, which recently
partnered with the company. “We are excited about the Quality Jobs program and [the Oklahoma Department of] Commerce’s interest in helping us.” After Commerce made a visit to the company’s facility, Phil Estes, managing member of Horizon Holdings, LLC, and Parks invited the Commerce team to join the companies at International Boatbuilders Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) held in Tampa, Fla. “We are eager to expand our supply chain partnerships in Oklahoma because Parks Manufacturing (the parent company of Blue Wave Boats and Silver Wave Boats) is a proud 25-year-old Oklahoma based company and because operating in the state of Oklahoma has so many advantages … great employees, low costs, high quality of life, and excellent infrastructure among many others … relative to some other choices. As such, we are looking across our supply chain for progressive, growth oriented suppliers who want to colocate with us in Oklahoma and to help
us build our businesses together,” says Estes. “Working with the Oklahoma Department of Commerce to expand and strengthen our supply chain will help our dealers and our company deliver better products to our consumers.” Charles Kimbrough, director of business development for Commerce, attended IBEX on behalf of Commerce. “We were honored to be introduced to people and companies in their supply chain. It’s a great experience to help rural Oklahoma companies grow and expand. That is what Commerce is all about,” said Kimbrough. “So to come out to a show like this, walk the floor with one of our vendors and talk to other companies about our state is an endorsement that we hope will lead to more quality jobs for people throughout our state.” Businesses looking for expansion assistance should call 405-815-6552 toll-free 800-588-5959, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rural Development Conference to be Held December 5 Commerce & partners hosting conference focused on rural development
The Oklahoma Department of Commerce and partner agencies will meet on December 5 at the Moore Norman Technology Center in Oklahoma City to host a one-day conference focused on rural development. Local elected officials, economic development professionals, community non-profits, and others engaged in community and business development are encouraged to attend. Early bird registration is available now for a discount rate of $50 and will increase to $60 on November 15. Topics important to communities as they plan and apply for infrastructure and social program grants include: Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), Rural Economic Action Plan (REAP), Economic Development Infrastructure Financing (EDIF), and Capital Improvement Planning (CIP). Also on the agenda are topics addressing rural broadband internet access, tribal issues, retail attraction, Main Street program and development finance. Secretary of Native American Affairs Chris Benge will lead a panel session covering tribal collaboration in rural areas, and Secretary of Agriculture Jim Reese will lead a panel session covering rural broadband. Additionally, there will be speakers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Oklahoma Development Finance Authority, Federal Reserve, and REI Oklahoma. Speakers from the U.S. Census Bureau and Oklahoma State Data Center will provide important information about the 2020 Census and how local participation affects rural funding. Nationally, $589.7 billion in annual
federal assistance funding is tied to Census Bureau data. Oklahomaâ€™s portion is $6.55 billion annually. With key deadlines fast approaching, local work is necessary to ensure Oklahoma receives its fair and appropriate share of funding. Conference attendees will learn how town, city, and county governments can participate in this once-a-decade opportunity. Registration is now open for Oklahoma Data Center Connect, a rural economic development conference and workshop.
December 5, 2017, 9AM - 4:30 PM Moore Norman Technology Center Early bird registration of $50 available through Nov. 14, 2017 Breakfast and lunch are included in your registration. Topics important to smaller communities as they plan and apply for infrastructure and social program grants include: Community Development Blog Grants (CDBG), Rural Economic Action Plan (REAP), Economic Development Infrastructure Financing (EDIF), and Capital Improvement Planning (CIP). Also on the agenda are topics addressing rural broadband internet access, tribal issues, retail attraction & Main Street program, development financing, and more. For a complete list of topics and to register, visit okcommerce.gov/connect.
Amazon Holds Ribbon Cutting for New OKC Center Amazon completed construction of a new sorting center in Oklahoma City and held a ribbon cutting ceremony late last month. The $3 million, 300,000-square-foot Amazon facility is currently hiring hundreds of employees to operate the center. This location will not hold inventory but will focus on sorting packaged orders. According to Amazon, Oklahoma customers should notice improved delivery times. Logistics is a growing business sector in Oklahoma and the opening of Amazon will help boost Oklahoma’s profile for companies looking to expand in that industry.
Governor Mary Fallin, Secretary of Commerce and Tourism Deby Snodgrass were amongst those in attendance at the Amazon ribbon cutting ceremony.
TED ALLEN/DAVID WALKER SCHOLARSHIP Sponsored by the Oklahoma Weatherization Housing Advisory Council, each year the Oklahoma Association of Community Action Agencies makes available a $1,000 college scholarship in memory of Ted Allen and David Walker. Request for application packs may be made at the following address: Ted Allen/David Walker Scholarship ATTN: John Jones KI BOIS Community Action Foundation, Inc. P.O. Box 727, Stigler, OK 74462 or call 918-967-3325 ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS 1. Applicants are limited to Oklahoma high school seniors with a minimum grade point average of 3.0. 2. Applicants must be a direct relative (2nd degree) of an employee of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Oklahoma Department of Commerce (ODOC), Oklahoma Housing Finance Agency (OHFA), or a Community Action Agency (CAA).
3. Applicants must be planning to attend an accredited fouryear college/university or an accredited junior college with plans to complete a degree. AWARD A $1,000 one-time scholarship will be awarded each year to one successful applicant based on a five hundred word essay entitled: “The Importance of Affordable Housing for the Low Income” Applicants will be judged on punctuation, grammar, style and content. Final award will be presented at the annual Housing and Energy Conference. Applications are due January 12, 2018.
Opening the Door for Adult Learners Guest Commentary: State Regent Ann Holloway
We must continue engaging adult learners to complete their degrees and utilize their skills, expertise and life experiences to strengthen Oklahoma’s economy and workforce.
~ State Regent Ann Holloway
When most of us think about college, we picture bright, eager, young people with incredible potential transitioning from high school to college. This is a vision realized by many Oklahoma families. There is, however, another view of college that is less visualized, but realized more every day: enrolling, educating and serving adult college students. As Oklahoma’s workforce training and education needs grow, so does the population of adults who need to finish a degree they started or retrain in a different field. State Regents’ research indicates there are more than 300,000 Oklahomans who have successfully completed some college coursework, but have not earned a degree. These students invested time and money to pursue a degree, and demonstrated they had the ability to go to college — but something got in the way. For many students, those barriers come in the form of inflexible work schedules, family obligations and financial hardship. These individuals are Oklahoma assets who have not yet realized their full workforce potential. As an Ardmore resident and an adult learner — who returned to Murray State College for an associate degree and went on to Southeastern Oklahoma State University to earn a bachelor’s degree as a married mother of three with a full-time job — I look at the needs of both traditional and non-traditional students in my community. Approximately 20 percent of Ardmore residents age 25 or older hold a bachelor’s degree, compared to 25 percent of Oklahomans. Data from the Georgetown Center for Education and Workforce tell us that by 2020, 37 percent of jobs in Oklahoma will require an associate degree, bachelor’s degree or higher. This knowledge gap represents evolving workforce demands that put Ardmore — and the state of Oklahoma — at a significant disadvantage. We must do better.
Oklahoma public higher education took on the challenge of serving adult students in 2007 with the launch of Reach Higher, Oklahoma’s adult degree completion program. Through this program, more than 4,000 adults have returned to complete degree programs. Building on the successes and lessons learned through the current Reach Higher program, the State Regents were awarded a three-year grant from the Lumina Foundation in June 2017 to create a “promise” program that would provide tuition and other financial assistance for adult students. As we develop and implement this new program over the next year, our goal is to find full support for adult learners to complete degrees that correlate to the 100 Critical Occupations list created through the Governor’s Oklahoma Works initiative. We’re partnering with businesses, tribes, agencies, and nonprofit service providers to execute this vision. A student with a college degree will earn approximately $1 million more in a lifetime than a high school graduate, and students who learn here, earn here — more than 87 percent of Oklahoma residents who graduate with a bachelor’s degree remain in the state and are employed in the state one year after graduation. I hope my experience encourages other adult students to pursue higher education. We must continue engaging adult learners to complete their degrees and utilize their skills, expertise and life experiences to strengthen Oklahoma’s economy and workforce. My motto is, you’re never too old to advance your education. Originally Published in the Fall Newsletter ‘Degrees of Progress’ News from the State Regents for Higher Education. Sign-up or see past issues visit: okhighered.org/state-system/degrees-of-progress
Upcoming Events and Important Dates COMPLETING RFPS WITH CENSUS AND OTHER DATABASES Two upcoming workshops:
Monday, November 13, 2017, McAlester, OK Monday, December 11, 2017, Weatherford, OK Costs: Free to attend, registration required Filling out Requests for Proposal (RFPâ€™s) can be a daunting task, but is critical in attracting businesses to your location. Learn how to find the data you need with a free two-hour interactive workshop with direct application for business recruitment and development in your community. The workshop will include an overview of the RFP and site selection processes, followed by a hands-on tutorial with Department of Commerce researchers on sources, databases, and strategies to help you fill out RFPs for your own community. Registration and additional details at: okcommerce.gov/data/workshops
NEW PIONEER A PRODUCT OF THE OKLAHOMA DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Kimberly Hickerson CONTRIBUTORS: Stefanie Appleton, Bryan Boone, State Regent for Higher Education Ann Holloway PHOTO CREDITS: Oklahoma Dept. of Commerce
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT (CDBG) ADMINISTRATOR CERTIFICATION TRAINING
Tuesday, December 5-7, 2017 Oklahoma Weatherization Training Center, Edmond, OK Costs: Free to attend, registration required, You must attend all 3 days of the training in order to receive the Administrator Certification. Contact Kathy Gain email@example.com to register.
RURAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CONFERENCE AND WORKSHOP
FOR NEW PIONEER SUBMISSIONS AND STORY IDEAS CONTACT: Kimberly Hickerson Editor-in-Chief New Pioneer (405) 815-5240 firstname.lastname@example.org Oklahoma Department of Commerce 900 N. Stiles Ave. Oklahoma City, OK 73104
Tuesday, December 5, 2017, 9AM - 4:30 PM Moore Norman Technology Center, Norman, OK Early bird registration of $50 available through Nov. 14, 2017. Breakfast and lunch are included in your registration. Topics important to smaller communities as they plan and apply for infrastructure and social program grants include: Community Development Blog Grants (CDBG), Rural Economic Action Plan (REAP), Economic Development Infrastructure Financing (EDIF), and Capital Improvement Planning (CIP).
For a complete list of topics and to register, visit okcommerce.gov/connect.
VETERANS DAY Friday, November 10, 2017 State Offices Closed THANKSGIVING DAY Thursday, Friday, November 24, 25 State Offices Closed