Bloomington Targeting Top Tech Talent
Bloomington leaders say much of the city's 2014 economic strategy focuses on attracting and developing tech talent. Bloomington Economic Development Corp. President Ron Walker says the city plans to expand a technology partnership to include a job fair and coding school program. He says in addition to attracting new tech companies and talent, the city hopes to train people already living in the area for the jobs that are available. January 17, 2014
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Bloomington Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) reported on 2013 economic development efforts to members, community leaders, and stakeholders during its annual meeting on January 15. Introducing Bloomington as “A Community of Discovery and Innovation,” the BEDC presented information on organizational achievements and business development projects in 2013, as well as 2014 plans, which include a Bloomington Coding School Pilot Program, an Entrepreneurship Ecosystem project, and a new life sciences jobs portal as well as aggressive business development and marketing activities.
The BEDC met with 50 local businesses in 2013, which led to six retention and expansion projects and the BEDC helped three new employers establish a presence in Bloomington.
“Combining anticipated new jobs as well as jobs retained, these projects will inject over $20 million in annual personal income into our regional economy,” said Ron Walker, President of the BEDC. The annual report also highlighted the newest shovel ready site at 311 North Curry Pike and unveiled a new Bloomington Life Sciences Partnership interactive website that features a jobs portal, regional assets, and life sciences events calendar.
The keynote address came from local entrepreneur Ari Vidali, Founder & CEO of ENVISAGE Technologies, a Bloomington-based 2013 Indiana Companies to Watch awardee that provides compliance and training ecosystems for law enforcement and public safety industries. Vidali, a former international concert violinist, came to Bloomington 24 years ago.
“The entrepreneur of tomorrow may not be the person who has an MBA, may not be the person who went to business school,” explained Vidali. “I didn't, and I've started six different technology businesses.”
Vidali told the audience of 150 business and community leaders that he decided to stay and grow his businesses in Bloomington because of the support from local and state government, community assets, and the unique culture Bloomington offers.
The Bloomington Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) is a not-for-profit, public-private partnership dedicated to the retention, development, and attraction of quality jobs in Monroe County. The BEDC is led by a partnership of private industry leaders, the City of Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana University, and Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington. For more information, visit www.comparebloomington.us.
Source: Bloomington Economic Development Corp.