Partnership Touts Progress for First Half of 2018

partnership highlights

The Roanoke Regional Partnership held a quarterly investor update on June 7 to present a report on activity in the first five months of 2018. Beth Doughty, executive director, talked about the Partnership’s 360-degree approach to economic growth which integrates business investment, talent solutions, and outdoor assets. 

Highlights from the presentation:

  • Three announcements in 2018 are Atlantic Credit & Finance, Stik-Pak Solutions, and SchaeferRolls which account for 200 new jobs, 244 retained jobs, and $30 million in investment.
  • 20 active business investment projects with strong interest from the food and beverage sector and an increase in foreign direct investment activity.
  • Work is underway on a talent pipeline from the areas 25 colleges and universities to the businesses of the region. Erin Burcham, new director of talent solutions, has worked with 20 businesses, 14 colleges, and 16 other partners to build this pipeline.
  • Expand Outside events to connect young professionals and employers start this afternoon.
  • In September, we will launch a talent website focused on living and working in the region. A job board will be added by the end of the year.
  • The Roanoke, New River, and Lynchburg regions are working together on a GO Virginia project to develop sound research on the challenges and solutions to brain drain.
  • The 2018 Foot Levelers Blue Ridge Marathon finished with an 11 percent growth in registered runners and increased economic impact of $680,000.
  • Outdoor Mentors, in partnership with Big Brothers and Big Sisters, doubled in size.
  • Kayak launches will be built in the Alleghany Highlands, Botetourt County, and Franklin County thanks to matching funds from the Roanoke Outside Foundation.
  • A new crowdfunding campaign is being launched through the Foundation to build a low-profile dock at Carvins Cove for stand-up paddleboards, kayaks/canoes, and sculls. Revolution Rowing, which relocated from Georgia, is leading the effort.
  • Roanoke Outside connections are bringing groups to the region. The Cooper Tires and Mountain State Overland FAM tour will focus on overland adventures. The Outdoor Bloggers Summit, which recognized Roanoke Outside last year, will hold its annual summit in Roanoke during GO Fest, October 12-14.
  • The Deschutes Brewery GO Cross Race, a UCI designated cyclocross event, will attract top talent to the region September 1-2.

The Roanoke Regional Partnership is a public-private partnership supported by eight localities and 200 business investors. It was established in 1983 and is one of the oldest regional economic development organizations in Virginia. It was recognized for excellence in economic development in 2017 by the Site Selectors Guild.