Tualatin leverages national America's Best Communities program to promote unique local assets
Tualatin calls for community support to help win a $10 million competition
Sponsored by Frontier Communications, DISH Network, The Weather Channel and CoBank, America's Best Communities aims to spark innovation and growth in communities
across the country
Tualatin, August 3, 2015 - In the weeks since advancing to the America's Best Communities quarterfinals, local leaders have begun work developing a comprehensive strategy to revitalize the local economy and further enhance quality of life. As one of just 50 communities recognized in this nationwide campaign, Tualatin is also striving to capitalize on this opportunity to share the community's unique story and promote local assets to help attract visitors, as well as potential employers, from across the country.
The local team leading Tualatin's efforts in the America's Best Communities competition hopes to add shared community gathering space to bring the elements of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) together in one place. The ABC initiative is hyper-focused on one specific target, connecting youth and underserved populations to STEAM education and Career Technical Education (CTE) training that align with Tualatin's existing advanced manufacturing industry base. In addition to providing jobs and personal growth opportunities for residents, Tualatin hopes to begin developing a workforce pipeline for a large cross-section of their employers. This team led by Mask & Mirror Community Theater and the Tualatin Chamber of Commerce also includes the South Metro-Salem STEM Partnership, the City of Tualatin, Tigard-Tualatin School District and the Tualatin Tomorrow Vision Advisory Committee.
"This competition is a great opportunity to generate awareness for a critical need in Tualatin and bring our community partners together to collaborate and develop solutions which can serve as a national example of how to inspire kids to pursue careers in the fields of STEAM to bolster a strong economy," said Tualatin Mayor Lou Ogden.
America's Best Communities -- a $10 million competition, sponsored by Frontier Communications, DISH Network, CoBank and The Weather Channel, to revitalize small towns and cities -- awarded Tualatin $50,000 to devise a Community Revitalization Plan that will serve as a roadmap to a stronger community for generations to come.
A critical component to winning the competition -- which boasts a $3 million grand prize -- is community engagement. The local ABC team, is calling on community residents to get involved and share their vision for the community's future to help Tualatin secure the America's Best Community title and the millions of dollars in investment that come with it.
"We all know Tualatin is a strong, vibrant community, and we've got an excellent chance to advance to next rounds of this national competition. But to win the whole thing, we're going to need the community's support," said John Bartholomew, board member of Mask & Mirror and a member of the Tualatin Tomorrow Advisory Committee. "We're encouraging all of our neighbors to get involved and help us prove to the rest of the country that we are America's Best Community."
Tualatin residents are encouraged to connect with the ABC team through social media and in person. The team is providing updates and engaging with community members on Facebook at Facebook.com/TualatinABC and on Twitter at @TualatinABC. They've also launched a website at www.tualatinabc.org.
The team's next meeting is scheduled for 5:30 pm on August 18 at the Tualatin Police Department Training Room. There will also be many opportunities this fall where community members will be invited to share their ideas for Tualatin's plan.
As part of the national exposure Tualatin has gained through its success in the America's Best Communities competition, the community is expected to be featured on The Weather Channel.
America's Best Communities is a multi-stage, three-year competition that is providing $4 million in seed money and other support to assist communities as they develop new economic growth strategies. The top three communities -- those with the most innovative proposals being effectively implemented -- will share a total of $6 million in prize money. The winning community will be awarded $3 million, with $2 million for second place and $1 million for third.