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Fueling The Future: A Community Initiative

Craig-Whitney-1

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What Is Fueling the Future?

A regional initiative for Dilworth, Fargo, Moorhead and West Fargo to accelerate future success.

Fueling the Future is gathering energy and purpose to accomplish an important objective in service to “the long view” discussed in this column a couple months ago.

Last month, several community-wide conversations generated a vision and direction mandating a course of action to create an attractive, resilient, and viable future for this region and the next generation. The work plan is certain to build upon “people, prosperity and place” — our place.

With more than 50 percent representation from the business community and participation from education and human-services interests, these conversations honed in on program components of a critical, regional dimension that aren’t already being addressed by the excellent businesses and agencies operating in the metro.

The important task of honing in on what must be accomplished — and when and how — is well underway, with the explicit requirement that objectives be specific, measurable, attainable, repeatable and time-bound (SMART). Accountability is embedded in every program component.

The net increase in economic growth and wealth associated with Fueling the Future is a rising tide that will lift all boats.

There are strong currents for uniting today’s efforts to place freshly graduating talent (high school, academy and college) where and when needed by this region’s robust and talent-thirsty industries: agriculture, education, healthcare, manufacturing and technology. There is support for boosting the availability of under- and unemployed talent by increasing affordable infant and child care, certification/GED, access to transportation, second language and New American solutions.

Other Fueling the Future program highlights pertain to growing the region’s wealth through primary job creation while enhancing quality-of-life expectations through infrastructure improvements (e.g., arts and/or convention centers).

Because Fueling the Future is a first-of-its-kind community-wide effort, the question was asked about how it might share what seems like a crowded space of nonprofits aiming to accomplish much on a stretched budget. The compelling answer is this: The net increase in economic growth and wealth associated with Fueling the Future is a rising tide that will lift all boats. Moreover, an effective, sustained and trusted Fueling the Future business-leadership team can be the sounding board on future community-consensus decisions.

That’s the promise of aligning efforts and futuring together to fuel Cass and Clay Counties’ prosperity.

All aboard!

FMWF Chamber of Commerce

FMWFChamber.com
202 1st Ave. N, Moorhead

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Written by Craig Whitney

Craig Whitney is the president and CEO of the Fargo Moorhead West Fargo Chamber of Commerce.

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