The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce is proud to once again partner with the city of Phoenix to present Mayor Greg Stanton’s 2017 State of the City address. It is through collaborative efforts such as this event and our Phoenix Forward initiative that we promote regional prosperity, serving as catalysts for economic vitality, job creation and strong communities.
Phoenix Forward is our collaborative, strategic approach to economic development that brings the resources of our collaborative partnerships with the Arizona Commerce Authority, the city of Phoenix and Maricopa County to the front doors of businesses.
Most importantly, Phoenix Forward is a plan to grow Arizona’s economy from within. A vital component of this plan is regionalization. We seek to give this program to our neighboring cities, chambers and other economic development organizations to address their specific needs while contributing to our collective strength as a region. I’m proud to say both Tempe and Glendale have committed to implementing this economic development work within their chambers and cities and we encourage others to join us. Creating a place in which we want to live and work is our job. Collaboration is the key to that effort.
Speaking of collaboration, the Chamber and our Phoenix Forward partners have visited and assessed the needs more than 2,000 businesses and connected many of them to resources. Access to a well-trained workforce is the top request of these business owners.
The Greater Phoenix Chamber Foundation’s workforce development collaborative groups are our response to that request. I encourage companies looking for talent to get involved in one of our five workforce collaborative groups specifically dedicated to identifying industry needs, locating programs, resources and partners, and training the needed workforce.
We are strongest and most productive when we align our efforts to work toward common goals. As a proponent of the Phoenix Forward initiative, Mayor Stanton continues to work with the Chamber and others toward long-term regional economic prosperity. Mayor Stanton has accompanied the Chamber and other business leaders on multiple benchmarking trips to other big cities to bring their best practices back here, for our benefit.
Our eye for economic development and regional prosperity even extends across the border to Mexico, our largest international trading partner. We worked to open a Phoenix trade office in Mexico City last year and we just opened the city’s second Mexico trade office in Hermosillo. We’re excited to continue to work with the city.
As Mayor Stanton delivers his plans for this year and beyond to more than 1,000 business, political and community leaders, I look forward to working with him, the city, the business community and any other partners seeking to grow our region.