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Chamber reviews 2010 accomplishments

The Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce partnered with numerous organizations to help defeat Amendment 4, fill EverBank Field, help small businesses grow, and, through its economic development arm, Cornerstone, add 3,200 new jobs and strengthen Jacksonville’s position as America’s Logistics Center, according to a report from the Chamber.

“We helped propel the region’s business growth in 2010, helping 26 businesses relocate and expand into Jacksonville over the past year,” said Kelly Madden, Chamber Chair and North Florida Wholesale Region President of Wells Fargo.

Announcements about high-wage job growth in Jacksonville include:

  • Bank of America Corp. – 1,000 new jobs
  • Lender Processing Services – 350 new jobs
  • Digital Risk – 300 new jobs
  • PNC Mortgage – 200 new jobs
  • Adecco – 100 new jobs
  • Flightstar Aircraft Services – 200 jobs, $25 million in capital investment
  • Mercedes-Benz – 98 new jobs, $24 million in capital investment
  • Interline Brands – 70 new jobs, more than $3 million in capital investment

To help solidify Jacksonville as a logistics center, Cornerstone collaborated with the City of Jacksonville, JAXPORT, and North Florida Transportation Planning Organization to arrange for, fund, and begin the North Florida Freight Logistics and Intermodal Plan.  Required to obtain federal funding, the plan will outline capital infrastructure needs.

“The economic success of Northeast Florida is directly linked to our region’s competitive ability to serve as a logistics hub,” said Chamber International Chair and Holland & Knight Partner George Gabel. 

The Chamber actively engaged in the effort to defeat Amendment 4.

The Chamber estimates that the Jaguars team has an economic impact of more than $200 million per year on the local economy.  Members of the Chamber’s Retain the Jaguars committee contacted more than 100 businesses, resulting in individual ticket sales and customized corporate packages. 

Nearly 200 representatives from every sector of the health care industry and small business owners concerned about health issues participated in the Chamber’s first Health Council meeting in September.  In just three months, the Health Council added nearly 100 members and continues to attract large crowds.

More than 3000 aspiring and existing small business owners sought guidance from the Chamber’s Small Business Division workshops, counseling sessions and mentors. The Chamber helped launch 37 new businesses that created 144 new jobs. 

Five Northeast Florida women entrepreneurs collectively added 80 new jobs and attributed their business growth to the personalized, expert guidance they received through the ATHENAPowerLink mentoring program. Offered through the Chamber’s Jacksonville Women’s Business Center (JWBC), ATHENAPowerLink is a specialized year-long program that helps women fine-tune their business practices, increase revenue and grow.

“JWBC provides a number of robust programs that offer relationship-based, customized coaching and mentoring in the community,” said Candace Moody, JWBC Advisory Board Vice Chair, a mentor and the Vice President of Communications at Worksource.

“It is because of the active involvement of our members and business partners that we were able to achieve such tremendous accomplishments in 2010,” said Wally Lee, President of the Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce.  “We so much appreciate all who contributed their time, talent and resources to ensure that Jacksonville is a vibrant community with a strong economy and an outstanding quality of life.”

The Chamber’s 2011 Board of Directors, chaired by A. Hugh Greene, Baptist Health System’s CEO, will meet January 21 to set the organizations 2011 work agenda.

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