Lots of group events this week! Some GPEDC updates to end your week:
Manufacturing Network: The Greater Peoria Manufacturing Network held its latest meeting at Industry Brewing in Peoria yesterday. Attendees had the chance to network with each other and also hear a few presentations. Norm Griffin of Career Link shared about his organization’s business services, including funding for “on the job training” that can pay up to 90% of an employee’s wages during the first six months of employment. Jerod McMorris and Gary Swantner of Good Energy discussed various ways manufacturers can save money on electricity and natural gas, particularly with an emerging market in “demand response.” James McGhee of 1060 Machine, the newest member of the Network, introduced himself and the capabilities of his company. And Jeremy Casper of Quality Metal Products discussed a partnership they formed with Integris Group, another Network member. We are looking forward to a great 2023.
Distillery Labs Meetup: Completely by coincidence, the Distillery Labs team hosted their monthly startup mixer on the other side of Industry at the same time. A nice crowd of about 25 gathered to meet one another, learn about new startups, and have a good time. Distillery Labs board chair Bob Sehring was able to spend some time getting to know the latest gBeta cohort and Dick Peplow stepped across the hall to share about the Greater Peoria Manufacturing Network. The event concluded with the group walking next door to check out River City Labs, a membership-based “makerspace” that helps people with physical prototyping and just advancing their own hobbies. Be on the lookout for news about more monthly startup mixers in 2023.
Technical Working Group: For as long as I can remember – and long before I joined GPEDC as CEO – we’ve hosted the “Technical Working Group,” the boringly named monthly gathering of our local community and economic development partners. This month Kari was joined by Leigh Ann Brown of the Morton EDC to discuss the creation of a “workforce development toolkit” that would help employers and job seekers discover services that could help fill needs. They shared an outline and some early work and brainstormed some resources with the group. This will be a group priority over the next few months with the hope of publicly launching the toolkit in the early spring of 2023.
Have a great weekend.