Greater Freeport Partnership Workforce Initiative

As I’ve talked about before, the biggest threat to Stephenson County’s future prosperity is a lack of qualified workers.  This stems from both our shrinking and aging population base and from a skills mismatch with our current employers.  The effects of this problem...

Supporting Our Stephenson County Businesses

If one thinks of it at all, some people believe the term “economic development” is defined narrowly as bringing new business to the area. Of course, that is one element. In today’s world, though, I’d submit that business retention and growth is equally important....

Local Workers Wanted

On my information-gathering tour of Stephenson County’s employers, large and small, I’ve heard a consistent theme:  every business wants to attract more and higher quality workers.  With national unemployment under 4% and area unemployment at 5.3% (September 2018), it...

We’ve Disrupted the Status Quo

It’s a new era for Freeport and Stephenson County: The Greater Freeport Partnership is underway! This is a bold experiment in regional cooperation that is not often seen in Illinois, which has nearly 7,000 local governments that feud and fight among themselves for an...

Thank You for the Big Welcome

Thank you, Freeport and Stephenson County folks, for making me feel welcome for the first two weeks of my tenure. I am very happy to be here and am optimistic about the tremendous potential in this area of the state of Illinois. A bit about me: I am an Illinois...