Magazine | Business Facilities - Economic Development, Site Selection & Workforce Solutions

Home of Proud Americans

Home of Proud Americans

New Lenox, Illinois

Magazine Articles

FEATURE STORY: Building Inspiration – Over The Years And Into The Future

In 1994, the Asbury Park Press profiled Group C in a feature headlined “Trade Publisher Survives The Lean Years.” The photo that accompanied the profile shows Ed, seated, at work with Susan and Ted Coene.

In its 40-year history, entrepreneurship and innovation have been the hallmark of Group C’s emergence as a full-service provider to the site selection community. Ed Coene’s original formula for success still guides the development of a dynamic brand with international reach in print, online and unique events that are essential components of successful project development. From the November/December 2010 issue.

60 Seconds with Neal Wade, Sr. Vice President for Economic Development, St. Joe Co.

60 Seconds with Neal Wade, Sr. Vice President for  Economic Development, St. Joe Co.

Neal Wade left St. Joe Co. eight years ago to become director of the Alabama Development Office. He is now returning to St. Joe to spearhead the West Bay development in northwest Florida. BF: What attracted you to this opportunity and what do you bring to the table? NW: I’m bringing a whole new set of values and experiences I didn’t have before. If you’ve only been on the corporate side, state government can be a shock. It’s really been an education to me to learn how to navigate through all levels of government. I’ve also made a tremendous amount of contacts internationally as well as here in the U.S., especially among projects that we’re going to be targeting and among site consultants throughout the country. BF: Are there specific lessons you’ve learned in your state post that you can apply to your new position? NW: Government does not operate at the same pace that the private sector does–you don’t have the same abilities to make decisions inside state government that you do on the private side. It’s much slower [at the state level]. So you really have to pick your battles and figure out how you’re going to work within the system. It’s also really brought into focus that to be successful, you have to have a team: not just St. Joe, but local and state government, the new governor, all of those elements have to be part of the success we’re going to have down there. BF: How challenging is the economic environment in northwest Florida today? NW: We’re seeing a lot more activity than we were seeing two years ago. We’re seeing a lot of projects right now. Companies are preparing for recovery and the opportunity for activity is good. BF: What are the biggest selling points for West Bay? NW: In northwest Florida what we have to offer is an unparalleled quality of life, a workforce that can be trained to fit the companies we’re going to be targeting and we’re going to have a new set of sites that we’re going to make available over the next three years that weren’t available seven years ago. There are 1900 aerospace and defense businesses in northwest Florida, and when you combine that with the type of sites we will have available we’ve got a tremendous selling point. We also are changing the perception that the region is strictly a tourist destination rather than a major business location. BF: How important is the new Northwest Florida Beaches International […]