ECONOMY & JOBS

Impact Statement

Impact Statement

The Change We Want To See

The region has a skilled and sought-after workforce – enabling all families to improve their standard of living. Our people are employed and per capita income is above the national average.

As a hub of ideas and innovation, we nurture, grow and attract world-class industries and employers. We are recognized for leadership in advanced manufacturing, logistics and agribusiness.

Strategies

Strategies

How We Make It Happen

Unified Workforce Development Network: The region’s educators, trainers and employers operate as a single, effective network to connect and prepare residents for employment opportunities

Innovation: Public and private collaboration fosters a world class business development ecosystem to launch innovation and entrepreneurship

World-Class Industry Clusters: Leading industries leverage regional assets, create high performing supply chains, and command national recognition

Stimulating Income and Job Growth: Employers and civic entities stimulate career growth with jobs throughout the region

Business Attraction and Retention: Economic development partners collaborate regionally for business retention, expansion and attraction

Projects

Projects

Teams Working Towards This Vision

The Economy & Jobs spoke team is comprised of several members who work at various companies and organizations throughout the Rockford region. The group is one of the original project teams that came out of the early stages of the Transform Rockford movement. The team is actively working on and supporting several initiatives including the Rockford Area Aerospace Network, Innovation Ecosystem, Unified Workforce Development, Goodwill Excel Center, Small Business Development Center (SBDC), Rockford MakerSpace among several other projects.

In October of 2018, the City of Rockford approved a multi-million dollar development project between Rock Valley College, Winnebago County and the Rockford Local Development Corporation on the proposed Barber Coleman Advanced Manufacturing Center project. The former Barber Coleman textile machine factory, located on South Main Street, will cost approximately $32.3 to renovate with the goal of growing its own workforce in the field of manufacturing. The new center also has potential to encourage more private development on Rockford’s west side, clean-up a blighted neighborhood and welcome visitors and residents to the city’s downtown River District.

The Linking Talent with Opportunity is a regional effort with Rock Valley College (RVC) and Highland Community College, in addition to all RVC and Highland district high schools and business partners, to bring this new pathway model into the schools. Under the pathways model, students will graduate high school with high school and college credits, and/or industry-recognized credentials that will have them college, career and life ready.

Outcomes

Outcomes

How We Measure Success