We have a BRE (Business Retention and Expansion) Forum on November 10, 2022, from 9 AM to 11 AM at the TOWN OF CALLAHAN, FIRE DEPARTMENT, 1960 S Kings Rd, Callahan, FL 32011. Our existing businesses and workforce are the best barometers of how a community functions. In response to the changing needs of our business community, establishing a business retention and expansion program offers a set of resources and tools that adapt to fit the needs of our community. Please join our BRE Partners and us for our second Round Table Discussion, as we will be addressing feedback from the last event

Topics will include:

  • Success Stories from Local Businesses
  • Infrastructure Grant Awarded to the Town of Callahan
  • CareerSource - Talented Workforce

The efforts of our BRE Task Force have contributed to moving us toward sector partnerships, career pathways, and other opportunities for closer alignment between workforce, economic development, education, and social services strategies.

Having the support at a local and state level will allow us to build on the work done separately in our community and move forward in partnership.

  • Jerry Hinson - Economic Development
  • Roben Faircloth - CareerSource NEFL
  • Matt Mountjoy - Chamber of Commerce
  • Amy Boek - Tourism Development Council
  • Jodi Henson - Small Bussiness Development Center Cedrick Gibson - Education, FSCJ
  • Holly Coyle - Nassau County Economic Resources
  • Door Prize Giveaways and breakfast by Sweet As Cyn.

Breakfast by Sweet as Cyn

 NCEDB hosted the 2022 Hurricane Preparedness Workshop in preparation for this busy hurricane season. The panelists were:

  • Martha Oberdorfer, Deputy Director - Nassau County Emergency Operations
  • Royce Proctor, Marketing Director - Okefenokee Rural Electric Membership Corporation
  • Steve Turner, Owner - Turner Ace Hardware
  • Paul Schwend, Owner - Schwend Insurance

All panelists provided great information. Paul Schwend from Schwend Insurance expressed that you don't want to overlook Comprehensive coverage during a hurricane because a tree can fall on your car, or it could be caught in a flood. Also, Home Owners Insurance doesn't cover flooding so review your policy. You may need flood insurance.

Royce Proctor of Okefenoke REMC talked about how long it could take to restore power. The rule of thumb was to multiply the category of the hurricane by two to three weeks. He also talked about how OREMC will be doing a company-wide hurricane exercise on July 29 to get prepared for hurricane season. When Irma hit they had 150 line crews/personnel come to help. Some came from as far as Iowa.

Steve Turner from Turner Ace Hardware explained that you should include in your Hurricane Kit water, buckets, a weather radio, a lantern, batteries, and gas if you have a generator. He reminded everyone that planning is key because supply is in such a critical state right now.

Martha Oberdofer from Emergency Operations Center (EOC) explained what they offer during the hurricane season and how they can help with things such as temporary shelters, temporary homes, and points of distribution. Nassau County has yet to sustain full hurricane winds. The most sustained winds we can see in Nassau County are winds at 120 mph all the way up to Bryceville.

Breakfast was made by Chef Ian Kitch with the Culinary Arts Program at Nassau County's School District and his students. Thank you so much for such a delicious breakfast.

With over 50 businesses in attendance, our Business Retention and Expansion Forum was a great success. The panelists were Jerry Hinson for his BRE and economic development expertise, Jodi Henson of Small Business Development Center at UNF, Roben Faircloth of Career Source Northeast Florida, Cedrick Gibson of Florida State College at Jacksonville – Nassau Center, Tracey Stockdale of the Nassau County Chamber of Commerce, Amy Boek of Amelia Island Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Thad Crow from the Nassau County Planning Department. They all were very informative on their role in Economic Development and their services available for Nassau County businesses. Breakfast was included and cooked by Chef Ian Kitch with the Culinary Arts Program at Nassau County's School District, and it was delicious.

We received good feedback from all in attendance on the topics discussed. All of the entities working together and the support they can provide businesses was one of the most liked topics; others included County Planning and Workforce housing.  

We look forward to more successes as we implement the BRE Program. The next event is the Hurricane Preparedness Seminar.

Our recent BRE meeting was a great success. We are so excited about the things we will be offering to Nassau County and local businesses. We have special events that will be announced soon along with some great resources you do not want to miss! Stay tuned for the announcement. Help us better serve businesses in Nassau County by answering our Survey.  Take the BRE Survey now.

What does the Business Retention and Expansion committee do? 

Click below to view more information.

BRE Rack Card

The Business, Retention, and Expansion program is designed to demonstrate the appreciation for the businesses, and identify immediate needs, future plans, and opportunities for the community to deliver programs and services identified through a business survey process. So please help us by clicking on the link below and answering a few questions.

Take the BRE Survey now.


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