Here is today's summary of economic development news, a free service of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, representing Alabama's private sector investment in economic development.  If you enjoy NewsFlash, thank an EDPA Partner.


 

In this issue:
Chamber, state announce fast-track training for Commercial Jet
University of Alabama, Lockheed announce laboratory partnership
'Business at usual' at GE Decatur plant after company agrees to sell appliance division for $3.3B
60 Huntsville workers remain as Navistar completes truck engine plant consolidation
Innovation and Entrepreneurship Conference panel on Sept. 26 to feature State Superintendent of Education Dr. Tommy Bice
A Skateboard To Bring Back Local Manufacturing In The South Is Made From . . . Bamboo?
PNC Bank's Brian Bucher chats about the importance of community investments: 3 questions, 5 minutes
Trucking industry in need of workers with drive

  


Chamber, state announce fast-track training for Commercial Jet

By Lance Griffin

Sept. 8, 2014


 

A new fast-track to work program unveiled Monday in Dothan could help residents such as Permetheus Thomas take the first step to a career - free of charge - in just eight weeks.


 

The program is called CJET Academy . It partners Dothan 's Commercial Jet along with Alabama Industrial Development Training, the Dothan Area Chamber of Commerce and others in a training course allowing selected applicants to complete a free eight-week training course and receive a job offer from Commercial Jet upon graduation. Graduates will start out at $14 per hour.


 

John Schildroth , vice president and general manager of Commercial Jet's Dothan operations, said the program arose out of a need for workers, now.

 

more...

 

 

  


 

University of Alabama, Lockheed announce laboratory partnership

By Jason Morton

Staff Writer

September 8, 2014 


 

Global aerospace titan Lockheed Martin has partnered with the University of Alabama to develop an analytics research lab at the Culverhouse College of Commerce.


 

The partnership, announced today, will result in the first such facility of its kind in the United States that is dedicated exclusively to the field of data science.

 

"The University of Alabama and the Culverhouse College of Commerce have become recognized leaders in business analytics and innovation," said University of Alabama President Judy Bonner. "We are excited that this lab will provide research to businesses that will help them become more effective not only locally, but globally as well."

 

more...

 

[Tuscaloosa News]



 

 

  


'Business at usual' at GE Decatur plant after company agrees to sell appliance division for $3.3B

on September 09, 2014 

DECATUR, Alabama - It's "business as usual" at the General Electric refrigerator plant in Decatur, at least for now.

 

GE announced Monday it has entered an agreement to sell its appliance division - which includes its Decatur facility - to Swedish company Electrolux for $3.3 billion. GE spokeswoman Kim Freeman said it's still too early to say how the purchase might affect the plant, which is one of Morgan County's largest employers.

 

GE facilities in Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky and Indiana are also included in the sale. Until the deal closes in 2015, Freeman said the 1,000-employee Decatur site will continue operating as usual.

 

"We're going to be focused on making great refrigerators and competing and winning in the marketplace," she said.

 

more...

 

[al.com]


 

 

  


60 Huntsville workers remain as Navistar completes truck engine plant consolidation

on September 09, 2014

HUNTSVILLE, Alabama - Navistar's mid-range engine division in Huntsville is winding down months after announcing it will eliminate more than 200 jobs and transfer its medium-duty truck engine production to Melrose Park, Ill.

 

Elissa Maurer, manager of external communications for Navistar, said approximately 60 workers remain on-site in Huntsville and will continue to do so through mid-October. Maurer said laid-off workers have received severance packages and job placement assistance.

 

"We anticipate when the production concludes, we will have eliminated about 250 jobs," she told AL.com. "Aside from the mid-range facility, we will continue to build our 13-liter engine at our Huntsville, Ala., big bore engine plant.

 

more...

 

[al.com]

 

 

  


  Innovation and Entrepreneurship Conference panel on Sept. 26 to feature State Superintendent of Education Dr. Tommy Bice

 

Don't miss the opportunity to be part of the conversation about innovation in Alabama's classrooms during a panel discussion on Friday, Sept. 26, at the Fourth Annual Alabama Launchpad Innovation and Entrepreneurship Conference in Birmingham.

 

The panel discussion, sponsored by ADTRAN, Inc. and titled "Alabama Innovation Starts in the Classroom," is from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. in the BJCC East Meeting Room C at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex. 


 Panelists are Alabama State Superintendent of Education Dr. Tommy Bice; Ron McDaniel, President of the Alabama Educational Technology Association; John Wade, Alabama Supercomputer Authority CEO; Dr. Melinda Maddox, Assistant  State Superintendent of Education; and Brunson White, Alabama Secretary of Technology.  The discussion will be moderated by ADTRAN, Inc. Vice President Ted Cole. 


 

The future of Alabama's economic development is directly tied to the state's ability to provide an educational environment that will produce future innovators and entrepreneurs for the state.

A critical infrastructure component to foster innovation in the state's schools is access to Wi-Fi and high speed broadband connectivity.


 

Come hear this distinguished panel discuss the needs of Alabama's students, the steps being taken to create future innovators and the next steps toward driving Wi-Fi and broadband access throughout Alabama's school systems.


 

Dr. Tommy Bice
State Superintendent of Education, AL State Department of Education



Ron McDaniel
President, Alabama Educational Technology Association









 

  See a full conference agenda


 

Register Now! 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  


 

A Skateboard To Bring Back Local Manufacturing In The South Is Made From . . . Bamboo?

Adele Peters

Sept. 9, 2014


 

When a group of designers working in the small town of Greensboro, Alabama, decided to help revive local manufacturing, they started with an overlooked resource: stands of roadside bamboo that have grown in town since the late 1880s, and that most people consider weeds. The team's newest design reinvents the wooden skateboard in woven bamboo.

 

"You can end up making a pretty high-tech material in a pretty low-tech environment," says Lance Rake, a design professor from the University of Kansas who partnered with MakeLab, a collaborative design group developing social enterprises, to design the skateboard. In 2012, the team created HERObike, a line of bikes that uses advanced techniques to create a strong bamboo frame.

 

The skateboard was inspired by less common methods of using bamboo. "I spent five months on sabbatical in India, learning local techniques for splitting and weaving bamboo," Rake says. "It opens up possibilities for all kinds of products, when you can make three-dimensional forms like that. It's strong because of the fibers being woven together. That's what made me think skateboards would be ideal."

 

more...

 

[fastcoexist.com]

 

  


PNC Bank's Brian Bucher chats about the importance of community investments: 3 questions, 5 minutes

on September 05, 2014 
  

Brian Bucher, regional president of PNC Bank's Northern Alabama division, has only been in Birmingham for a couple of years, but he's already been caught up in its spirit of revitalization.

 

"I can't tell you how happy I am to be here," he said. "The growth we're seeing is so appealing." 

 

Bucher said it's PNC Bank's mission to keep that growth vibrant. I chatted with Bucher about the role of community investors and how local organizations can get help.

 

more...

 

[al.com]

 


  


 

Trucking industry in need of workers with drive

by Zach Winslett

September 7, 2014

 

There is possibly no industry short of agriculture as well-ingrained in the Cullman County economy as long-haul trucking, and, despite how stalwart the industry is in the area, perhaps nowhere else in Alabama has as much at stake regarding the nationwide shortage of truck drivers.

 

Cullman County is a veritable Mecca for trucking companies.

 

"We're right between the two major cities in Alabama," Ron Jacobs, safety director at James R. Smith Trucking, said. "Being 45 minutes apart from both puts us in a strategic location."

 

The causes for the shortage have been widely debated by local company officials, but there is tremendous agreement that the pool of incoming drivers is severely diminished.

 

"Qualified drivers are retiring," Safety Director of My Transportation John Henry said. "Baby boomers are retiring, and there's no one to replace them."

 

more...

 

[Cullman Times]

 

 


 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




Please feel free to forward along to someone who can use it by clicking on the "forward email" link below. Note also, that you can now make changes to your e-mail address and contact information through the link at the bottom.    
 
If you have news or suggestions, please forward them along to me.
 
Enjoy the day, 

Val Walton
   
Join Our Mailing List