This year is off to great start. The search for a new Associate Executive Director is underway but let me introduce you to Leslie Gantt and Candace Dalton. Leslie has been with the BCDA since October 2021 as the Economic Development Coordinator. In her role, she assists existing businesses with retention and expansion needs. Candace has been with the BCDA since October 2022 and is the Office Administrator. They are both a true asset to the team and strive to make Berkeley County better.
Looking back over the year ending December 2022, employment is up in 42 states with West Virginia being one of them. The Berkeley County Development Authority in collaboration with other entities hosted The Eastern Panhandle Economic Outlook. John Deskins, Ph. D., Director, Bureau of Business and Economic Research presented on how the Eastern Panhandle has been the state’s strongest economic region for well over a decade, experiencing sustained growth in population, employment, income, and other economic indicators. It was also reported that the Eastern Panhandle has the largest population increase of any region and we should continue to see consistent growth. Berkeley County is forecasted with average annual increases of 1.5 percent through 2027.
With the increase in population growth, it is necessary for the Berkeley County Development Authority to invest in our local community. We recently donated $25,000 to Martinsburg-Berkeley County Parks and Recreation to assist with a new playground at War Memorial Park. The playground will be ready for the 2023 summer season. The BCDA was also a sponsor of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship Banquet, which awards scholarships to 12 deserving Eastern Panhandle students to further their education.
Along with education, entrepreneurship is alive and well in Berkeley County. The Berkeley County Development Authority is partnering with Jefferson County Development Authority, Morgan County Economic Development Authority, Region 9 Planning and Development Council, Blue Ridge Community and Technical College, and JRTI Company Lab to bring you the Eastern Panhandle Entrepreneurs Forum. For details to the event on February 2, 2023: Upcoming Events – The Berkeley County Development Authority
Did you know all our agendas and minutes to our meetings can be found on our website? Please visit www.developmentauthority.com and check us out.
The Berkeley County Development Authority remains dedicated to the mission of promoting sustainable industrial and economic development through the cooperative sharing of resources with the community.