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A Letter from Jerry Chavez, CEO of Valley Vision Inc

Good Evening:


On behalf of the Valley Vision Board of Directors, I thank you for your continued support of economic development in the L-C Valley. I would also like to provide an update on the implementation progress of our Strategic Plan.

As you may have read in the Tribune, on October 9, 2023, the Lewiston City Council approved a one-year contract between the City and Valley Vision. Prior to the vote, I provided the Council with an update on our progress.

Here are some highlights:

  • Valley Vision has committed to defining industry sectors that are a good fit for our area’s resources, strengths, and workforce development infrastructure, such as the DeAtley Career Technical Education Center at the Lewiston High School, the Workforce and Business Development Center at Walla Walla Community College Clarkston Campus, and the Schweitzer Career & Technical Education Center.  Also, we have identified six industry sectors that define the types of businesses we are targeting, four of which are new.
  • Valley Vision originally defined four markets outside Idaho where these industries conduct daily operations. Recently, we expanded our marketing efforts to include Arizona, bringing the total number of markets to five. We are also pivoting our programming on an as-needed basis, due to market conditions.
  • Valley Vision has conducted 14 qualified business meetings and will travel to Arizona next week to conduct more. We are committed to complete 35 meetings by Spring of 2024, and we are well on track to meet that goal.
  • Valley Vision has committed to hosting five site tours with qualified businesses who have expressed interest in the Valley as a place to expand or relocate. To date, we have conducted three site tours, and two more are planned for November. These site tours are visitations by company officials to examine the L-C Valley as a potential fit for their business.
  • This business attraction process should produce one to two business locates per year.
  • Valley Vision is working on another crucial aspect of the Strategic Plan, the Business Expansion and Retention (BEAR) Program, which is ready to be launched later this month. In the upcoming weeks, we will:
    • Recruit volunteers to form a BEAR Team, made up of members from within the community, elected officials, partnering non-profit leaders, and Board Members from Valley Vision.
    • Train the BEAR Team to help Valley Vision conduct one-on-one confidential interviews.
    • Conduct confidential interviews with 21 primary sector businesses from within the Valley.
  • Finally, Valley Vision introduced a new solution for local businesses’ employee recruitment issues. We call the program “Hiring from Abroad” which leverages the available workforce in the commonwealth of Puerto Rico. These workers are U.S. citizens, legal to work, and do not need a visa to come here. While this may be new to the L-C Valley, this type of recruitment is already utilized successfully across the U.S by many businesses.  Additional insight regarding the process can be found here:

There is more to come, so please stay tuned!  If you have any questions, please call me at (208) 799-9083.




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