August 3, 2020

“Honor your commitments with integrity.”
-Les Brown

Thank you to the entire Columbus Region and to all the readers of this note for the past 10 great years in the Region.

Our family moved to the Columbus Region to help start an organization, to put our shoulders behind a cause, and to put years of experiences in other communities to work for Central Ohio. We are better for all of the new experiences we encountered along the way, the failures, and the successes. We are sincerely grateful for the friendships forged through all of the highs and lows.

This is roughly our 400th note of Economic Development Matters. Sometimes it feels like we are shouting from below that it really does matter that we develop our communities, prepare for success, and generate both opportunities for jobs/employment and the development of wealth across our entire region. This is especially true in the midst of all of the breaking news from day-to-day. Other times, such as now, when it is starkly evident that growth, jobs, and equity are lifelines to the future, we simply try to remind everyone to work together and to keep striving.

10 years in, we have more experience, the power of our scars, and a great organization and network from which to take action. However, these are historic times and we don’t have all of the answers we wish we had to address the challenges we face. We do have a plan steeped in solid principles, a set of crystal clear objectives, growing relationships, and the power of our platform to bring people together.

We feel liberated, not frozen, by the enormity of the moment and we know that some of our actions will fail, but true failure would be no action at all. Leaning into our headwinds, moving forward ever so slightly some days, taking a long-term view that reaches at least another decade when we are troubled by the current hour, and an inherent belief that economic development truly does matter will see us through a lot.

We look forward to as many days as we are given and hope to make great use of them all. Here is to moving forward and getting better.
-Kenny McDonald