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Chamber Partners With VSU's College of Business to Host Economic Summit
by Chamber News on June 11th, 2014

The Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber of Commerce and Valdosta State University will host the 4th Annual Economic Summit in late August. Top community leaders will come together to discuss strategy for improving Valdosta-Lowndes County economically.
Keynote speaker, George Mehaffy, Vice President for Academic Leadership and Change at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), will discuss productive strategies between communities and public universities.
The meeting will also feature a panel update on the progress of the previous year’s strategic plans. The two primary goals previously identified are to increase average weekly wages and provide more jobs to college graduates.

In the 2013 report, which compared 14 similar communities, Valdosta was in a three-way tie for 11th place. Indicators such as population growth, unemployment rate, educational attainment, median household income, and poverty rate were evaluated to determine overall rankings. Valdosta-Lowndes County continues to work toward moving up to the top five in the coming years. 
“Any time that a single event has the potential to bring economic and thought leaders together with the sole purpose of focusing on our community's long-term growth, good things can happen. That, in short, is why the Annual Economic Summit is so important,” said William McKinney, President of Valdosta State University. 
Business front-runners, educational professionals, and elected officials will gather to discuss ways to transform the local economy. The Summit has included leaders such as Mayor John Gayle and County Commission Chairman Bill Slaughter. Other leaders who have attended the event include those from Wiregrass Georgia Technical College, Valdosta State University, Valdosta-Lowndes County Industrial Authority, and the Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber of Commerce. 
The 4th Annual Economic Summit is an invitation-only event. To review previous Summit reports and photos, visit For more information on the 2014 Economic Summit, contact Varian Brown at (229)-247-8100 ext. 234 or

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