There’s a new, big, virtual economic development summit coming to High Point on Wednesday, Nov. 4 – the day after the election – and it should turn out to be everything from a celebration to a learning experience.
The giant electronic get-together is this years’ annual meeting of the High Point Economic Development Corp.(HPEDC), the public-private hybrid in High Point that works – very successfully in recent years – to bring new business to the city.
The Economic Development Corp. holds the meetings every year, but this year will be something special. For one thing, it’s the last annual meeting that will be hosted by HPEDC President Loren Hill, who has seemingly held that job forever. Rumor around High Point has it that, when Hill first took the job, his first order of business was clearing dinosaurs out of the area to make it safe for business.
Hill has announced he’s stepping down from that job at the end of the year, but he has also stated that he’ll continue to play some role in economic development.
Hill noted this week that, though the annual meeting will be virtual for the first time, it will, like previous in-person meetings, be an opportunity “to learn, celebrate – and tour a prominent High Point business.”
“We will hear from Patrick Medlin and Matthew Adkison from Amada, our virtual host,” Hill noted in a description of the event. “We will also see videos of the two amazing new buildings on the Japanese-based company’s High Point manufacturing and technical campus.”
Lacy Beasley of Retail Strategies – the 2019 annual meeting’s featured speaker – will discuss how retail has changed since the group last heard from her.
Chris Rivera of the Guilford County Workforce Development Board – better known as GuilfordWorks – will report on “the work and mission of his group as well as the workforce challenges resulting from the pandemic.”
The event will also highlight major projects and announcements of the last 12 months in High Point, Greensboro, and the rest of Guilford County.
The five-year anniversary of the Guilford County Economic Development Alliance will be celebrated as well – and there will no doubt be some words of fond farewell for Hill.
“I will reflect on my 20 years with the City of High Point and its economic development department,” Hill stated, “as I prepare to ‘re-direct not retire’ on January 1, 2021.”