EDC gives out economic leadership awards

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The Greater Colorado Springs Economic Development Corp. presented is 2003 Economic Development Leadership Awards during a breakfast Wednesday at The Antlers Adam’s Mark hotel.

Leadership Awards were given for: Community Economic Impact, Community Enhancement, Economic Impact, Outstanding Community Service, and Volunteer of the Year.

The 2003 Community Economic Impact Award was presented to Progressive, the nation’s third largest auto insurer, in recognition of the company’s new 300,000 square foot, $62 million campus in Northgate. Progressive employs 1,200 workers in Colorado Springs. The facility is designed to accommodate more than 2,200 employees.

The 2003 Community Enhancement Award for the most significant positive impact on community economic development was presented to Network Information and Space Security Center and the Space Foundation Symposium.

The 2003 Economic Impact Awards for the largest positive impact on the funding for the EDC program were presented to Nor’wood Development Group at the Platinum Level, and to El Paso Corp. Western Pipelines, Classic Companies, the Housing and Building Association, La Plata Investments and Keller Homes at the Gold Level.

The Economic Impact Award for an individual volunteer was presented to Jack Wiepking, president of MasterBilt Homes.

Pamela Shockley-Zalabak, chancellor of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs was honored with the Outstanding Community Service Award. The Volunteer of the Year award was presented to Jo Ann Miabella Galvan for donating 1,566 volunteer hours as project manager of the 2004 Strategic Initiative.

“These awards highlight the team effort that it takes to sustain and energize our local economy,” said Don Sall, chairman of the Board of the Greater Colorado Springs Economic Development Corp. “As we look back to 2003 we acknowledge our successes in spite of a very challenging economy. Now, in 2004, with 1,288 jobs committed, year to date, we are able to look forward with increased optimism. We have an outstanding team of investors, volunteers and community partners who make it possible for us to do a first-class job in recruiting quality jobs to our area while ensuring that our corporate customers receive unmatched service in assessing Colorado Springs as a possible location.”

Awards also were presented to past Chairman Tom Mullen, and past board members Tino Archuleta, Greg Gandy, Dave Keller, Phil Lane and Mike Schrader for their service to EDC and the community.

During the breakfast Catherine L. Mann, a senior fellow at the Institute for International Economics, a non-profit independent think-tank in Washington, D.C., discussed the effects of IT off-shoring on the U.S. economy.

Mann said that the good side of off-shoring is that it sometimes is the only way for a company to cut costs and survive. She said the challenge presented by off-shoring is job losses.

She also said that one of the keys to a company’s success in the global marketplace is to be a part of a global network. It doesn’t matter whether the parent company is based overseas or in the United States, she said, as long as it has an international reach.

Mann said that Colorado Springs has done a good job finding niches of economic opportunity and building on those niches. She said they key to continued success is to determine where out-sourcing fits in and challenging those niches.