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9 Years of Success

As we reach our nine-year mark as an organization, we reflect on our goals and the differences we have made. Our focus has not been to change the world, rather making a difference in our part of the world. That is what we have done in our time for our region.
 
Our aspirations included a world class staff, a focus on research and strategy, building an affiliation and partnership with the University, being truly regional - both with individual cities and counties in the region, and to be focus on our community and workforce development.
 
The professional staff that we have gained since our start have had a definitive impact on this organization. Pike Powers, who joined our team in the Spring of 2012, was extraordinarily involved in helping us think through ways we could grow and think strategically from a recruitment viewpoint. Then, Adriana joined in June of 2013. She has built a remarkable and - as we had hoped - world-class professional staff leading this organization. Our public and private sector nature of this organization is a challenge but has been made into an opportunity for GSMP. When Adriana arrived in 2013, we were about 70% public and 30% private. Now, we are about 55% public and 45% private - easing the burden on our public sector partners. We have grown our private sector investors to be over 125 companies investing on an annual basis.
 
We have also successfully integrated research and strategy into our daily practices. No business goes into operations without a plan, but we have two, five-year programs at work. Our aspiration was to be very plan, strategy and fact based. Now, we have these programs in place ensuring that we do just that.
Our University relations have set us apart, including having the affiliation and partnership with a high-caliber university president, Dr. Denise Trauth. I don't think we could be any more collaborative, strategically than we have been today. 
 
Let's talk regional results. Despite trying, we have not always been truly regional. However, welcoming Buda back into the partnership is increasing our progress in that goal. Having a two-county footprint is something we wanted to achieve and now we have.
On top of these advancements, the work that has been on the workforce development front has improved our community like never seen before. Jobs follow workforce; workforce doesn't follow jobs. For that reason, we have done more than just talk about it, rather roll up our sleeves and work with the Texas State University, our school districts, and ACC. Our partnerships have been truly interesting so far and are only ramping up.
 
Job growth has benefitted directly from our workforce development. We have gained an incredible 6,400 jobs at companies - such as Amazon, UMC, Katerra, ENF, CFAN, STAR Park, and SmileDirectClub. Many of these new jobs are being created in the disruptive sector, the innovative sector. This is no accident, but instead made possible by our university anchored strategy for ED.
 
I could not be more excited about the partnership and where we are headed. We have many assets that we didn't have 5 years ago, including Plum Creek, ENF Technologies, SDC and opportunities at the airport. Unrealized potential has been brought to this region. 
 
When I think of the folks around this table, the next chair, and the private sector investors, I know this is the kind of organization to become next generation leaders. I am very excited there are unlimited opportunities to amplify the success that we have started. I'm very proud of how far we have come, and we are just getting started.