Evolution of the Ohio Business Retention and Expansion Program

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Ohio State University. Office of Outreach and Engagement

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Launched in 1986, the Business Retention and Expansion (BR&E) program has worked with economic developers and community leaders in 79 of Ohio's 88 counties, helping them prioritize, plan and implement community development initiatives. After more than 25 years, the program has been credited with creating or retaining thousands of jobs not only in Ohio, but throughout the United States.


IMPACT. 1: A packaged curriculum has been developed to include three workshops, programmatic templates and turn-key software to support a comprehensive BR&E program on the local or regional level. Marketing materials, including a workbook and brochures, have been professionally developed to promote the program. -- 2. Improve residential quality of life. Establish integrated approach to economic development. Develop community economic decision-making capacity. Develop of a pro-business orientation. Improve community leaders' response to residents' concerns. Create factual basis for attraction and community marketing. Engage community residents in a discussion of their local economy -- 3. Extension Educators have conducted "train the trainer" sessions for colleagues in New York, Indiana and Florida. Florida has committed to incorporating BR&E programs for its Agriculture and Natural Resources Educators and Community Development Educators.
OSU PARTNERS: College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences; Ohio State University Extension
COMMUNITY PARTNERS: Wyandot County Economic Development; Fayette County Commissioners Weinland Park/University District; Van Wert Economic Development Point Place Business Association (Lucas County)
PRIMARY CONTACT: David Civittolo (Civittolo.1@osu.edu); Nancy Bowen (Bowen-ellzey.1@osu.edu)



Engaged Scholars, v. 2 (2014).