Editor’s Note: “The Economic Development Side” originally appears in the Pine Bluff Regional Chamber of Commerce’s weekly member e-newsletter. It is written by Rhonda Dishner, the Economic Development Alliance’s executive assistant.


Duties of staff members of the Economic Development Alliance for Jefferson County are pretty much equally divided between community and economic development.


Those on the community development side promote the Chamber of Commerce’s primary mission in support of local businesses. And those on the economic development side work in support of the Alliance’s central mission of bolstering existing industries in the county and recruiting new industries.


Even with individual responsibilities — geared to complementary roles within the organization — Alliance staff members do their jobs in tandem. It’s a team effort. However, in this case, both sides are actually on the same team. And they are “playing” to win for the community.


On one day of the year, Business Expo, it’s an even greater Alliance team effort. Last Thursday was this year’s “E” day. And all hands reported for duty in a coordinated effort to make this business promotion event a success.


A successful Business Expo is measured by a sell-out of booth space, high attendance by the general public, and a sizeable amount of positive feedback from participating vendors. If the vendors report an abundance of new leads for their products and services, the event accomplished its purpose — that day and, hopefully, for weeks and months to come.


More sales and profit by local businesses reflect a local economy that is thriving. A thriving economy generally lures even more businesses while enhancing the local quality of life. All that thriving can attract the attention of corporate decision-makers or consultants looking for a site for a new industry. And the community wins — again.


That’s why community development and economic development make such a good team.