The following press releases, blogs, success stories and webinars generated the most attention on EDA’s website in 2020 and encompass our mission to create conditions for economic growth and opportunity for all Americans.
When the Food Network visited Chico, California’s Upper Crust Bakery and Eatery for a 2019 episode of its popular series “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” viewers got a taste of some of the signature dishes, like black bean chili with jalapeño cheese corn muffin, that have long earned the Upper Crust rave reviews from locals.
Upper Crust’s recent notoriety was no accident: it is the result of the hard work and talent of a husband and wife team of restaurateurs, who have also received support from EDA’s Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) program, which provides gap financing to businesses that cannot otherwise obtain traditional bank loans.
Michelle Pearson’s idea for an invention came to her in a dream, but the reality of bringing her product to market proved to be a bit more challenging.
Pearson’s invention is an automated communion server, which would automatically dispense the wafer and wine during the Eucharist for Christians in churches, hospitals, nursing homes, and correctional facilities. A 63-year-old retired teacher, Pearson spent thousands of dollars and drew on the expertise of her large family to build a prototype, but they were unable to bring the product to market.
EDA is proud of its role in bolstering the American economy through its Opportunity Zones work. To date, EDA has invested more than $750 million in more than 500 Opportunity Zone projects across the country.
Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Opportunity Zones are spurring economic development and job growth in economically-distressed communities across the country.
In 2019, Catawba Valley Community College received a $750,000 grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to leverage resources for cutting-edge innovation and entrepreneurship at MSC, which is based in Conover, N.C. The college matched the grant with $750,000 in local funds.
The grant, awarded through EDA’s Regional Innovation Strategies (RIS) program (now known as Build to Scale), has allowed MSC to expand its support for small businesses looking to manufacture their textiles.
On October 8, Joel Frushone, Director of EDA’s Office of External Affairs and Communications announced a $3.9 million grant to the Kentucky Community and Technical College System to renovate an existing building at Hazard Community & Technical College to house its new Advanced Manufacturing and Construction Center of Excellence. The event was broadcast via Facebook Live.
By utilizing land once reliant on coal mining, Kentucky Community and Technical College System is using one of Kentucky’s 144 Tax Cuts and Jobs ActOpportunity Zone in a progressive manner to diversify its workforce.
My name is Juan Bauza and I’m the Economic Development Representative (EDR) for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands in the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) Philadelphia Regional Office. My main responsibilities are to build strategic economic development partnerships and develop meaningful projects within EDA’s program portfolio that result in job creation/retention, private investment leveraged, and above all, projects that stimulate long-term economic vitality.
In addition to my EDR role, I currently also serve as EDA’s Field Coordinator for the Economic Recovery Support Function under FEMA’s National Disaster Recovery Framework in support of Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma disaster recovery efforts.
The new Viroqua Business District is nearly complete and an agreement was finalized in August to welcome its first new business.
The business district, located in Viroqua in western Wisconsin’s Vernon County, offers “shovel-ready” development sites for light industrial, commercial retail and commercial non-retail businesses.
The project received a $2.6 million EDA grant in April 2019 to help the city develop business sites that would be more resilient to natural disasters, with a focus on flood prevention. The grant was matched with $660,000 in local funds.