Business

A Record-Setting Year

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Jim Maran
President of the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce

As we launch into the beginning of 2008, it is time to reflect on the successes of the Gwinnett Chamber”s membership, leadership and staff in 2007. Whether you are a member or not, strong chambers build strong communities and our successes are far reaching.

 

Creating Jobs and Wealth

  • Launching Partnership Gwinnett with Lt. Governor Casey Cagle at the State Capitol, the largest and most comprehensive economic and community development initiative in the Southeast.
     
  • Creating one of the largest economic development departments, second only to the state of Georgia.
     
  • Creating 27,713 new jobs and $300 million in new capital investment in Gwinnett.
     
  • Actively worked with more than 121 major economic development projects and inquiries, including the relocations of the world headquarters of Horizon Software International and Meggitt Defense Systems fats/ caswell, and the expansions of Cypress Care, Sage Software, Merial and more.
     
  • Conducting 375 existing industry calls to assist with the growth and expansion needs of Gwinnett”s existing businesses.
     

Growing Your Business

  • Conducting more than 250 seminars and events focused on helping Gwinnett”s small businesses and entrepreneurs grow and expand.
     
  • Hosting an average of 600 business leaders and sales executives monthly at Network Gwinnett meetings, averaging 75 leads passed and 35 percent resulting in closed business per week.
     
  • Launching Small Business University to hone the skills of small business owners in the areas of marketing, HR, finance, innovation and operations.
     
  • Partnering with UGA”s Small Business Development Center to host the Entrepreneurial Development Certificate program, focusing on the needs of new entrepreneurs.
     
  • Coordinating more than 200 ribbon cuttings and groundbreakings for Gwinnett”s newest and fastest growing businesses.
     

Strengthening Our Community

  • Creating the Chamber”s first Legislative Agenda and Transportation Strategy to pursue legislative policy to improve our water supply, transportation infrastructure, educational needs, and economic competitiveness.
     
  • Supporting Gwinnett”s cities in their efforts to pass Tax Allocation Districts to revitalize and reinvest in their communities. All nine of nine referenda passed – a historic precedent in the state of Georgia.
     
  • Hosting the largest Principal for a Day program in Georgia, placing more than 100 business leaders into local schools and creating our first-ever waiting list.
     
  • Launching the Governor”s Certified Work Ready Community program in partnership with the county, Gwinnett Technical College, Georgia Gwinnett College and Gwinnett County Public Schools to match industry workforce needs with the students” course of studies.
     
  • Leading the effort in Gwinnett to rally business support for Delta”s successful bid to secure an air route to Shanghai, China.
     

None of this could have been accomplished without the support of our more than 7,200 Chamber members.

As we give thanks and celebrate our successes of 2007, we look forward to another record-setting year with the promise of creating quality jobs and wealth, growing your business, and strengthening our community. We hope you”ll join us.