Waterloo, IA: (319) 232-1156 | Cedar Falls, IA: (319) 266-3593

Tag Archives: Waterloo

Wubbena Business & Professional Women Woman of the Year

The Alliance & Chamber congratulates Bette Wubbena for being named the Cedar Valley Woman of the Year by the Cedar Falls chapter of Business & Professional Women.

This year’s Cedar Valley Woman of the Year was awarded to Bette Wubenna at the 11th Annual Salute To Women event held on Tuesday, October 18th at the Park Place Event Center and hosted by The Business and Professional Women’s Club of Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Bette grew up in Allison, Iowa and graduated from Allison-Bristow High School.  She has been employed with the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber for over 26 years and currently serves as the Events Director. Bette has also been involved with numerous volunteer activities including the My Waterloo Days Parade Committee, the Waterloo School Foundation Trick or Trot Committee, the Waterloo Schools Foundation Breakfast Committee, the Family YWCO Capital Campaign Steering Committee, the Allen Foundation Development Committee, the Unity Point/Allen Capital Campaign Steering Committee and the American Heart Association Go Red Luncheon Committee.  Bette is also a member of the Waterloo Downtown Rotary Club.

Each year, nominations from all over the Cedar Valley are submitted to the BPW of Cedar Falls women’s club to be voted on.  Past winners of the prestigious Cedar Valley Woman of the Year award include Jean Trainor (2006), Heather Predergast (2007), Kathy Lee (2008), Maureen Collins-Williams (2009), Doris Kelley (2010), Jan Anderson (2011), Velda Philips (2012), Susan Whitson (2013), Kim Manning (2014), and Joyce Coil (2015). The BPW of Cedar Falls holds the annual Salute to Women event to honor professional women in the Cedar Valley as well as to raise scholarship funds for non-traditional students.

Cedar Valley Honored at Iowa Tourism Conference

The following was submitted by our Affiliate agencies, the Waterloo Convention and Visitors Bureau and Cedar Falls Tourism. These organizations in collaboration as Cedar Valley Tourism, and with the Alliance & Chamber to promote and maintain high-quality amenities that benefit visitors and residents alike.

Representatives from the Grout Museum District and Cedar Falls Community Main Street were honored at the Iowa Tourism Conference, held in Davenport.

Downtown Cedar Falls was honored as the state’s Outstanding Retail Experience and the Grout Museum’s Iowa Veterans Museum was honored as Iowa’s Outstanding Attraction and for Outstanding Marketing Collaboration.

Distinct features leading to the Main Street award include friendly store owners serving up memorable experiences from 30+ unique shops and boutiques and 20+ bars, cafes and restaurants. The charm of the area, endless events and creative strategies employed the Community Main Street to position the district as a great get away destination were also noted.

The Grout Museum District’s 365 & Counting: Iowans in the Vietnam War exhibit enabled the Grout to capture the Attraction of the Year Award for the second time in five years. The Outstanding Marketing Collaboration was awarded for the partnership that was developed between the Grout and the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier for their Vietnam Veteran’s Profile features. The Grout provided content to reporters from the Voices of Iowa interview collection and the Courier featured 50 area Vietnam veterans, one each day, during the fall of 2015,  within the duration of the 365 & Counting: Iowans in the Vietnam War exhibit. The features helped shine a light on the stories of the men and women who proudly served our county during one of the most controversial wars in history and also helped spread awareness about a powerful exhibit that educated the public and helped heal those who lived through it 50 years ago.

Tourism is an $8 billion industry in Iowa, employing 67,400 people statewide and generating more than $466.7 million in state taxes.  In Black Hawk County alone, visitors spent $351.7 million dollars.

 

cvtourism

Keith Rahe, Travel Federation of Iowa; Carol Lilly,  and Jessica Palmer, Cedar Falls Main Street; Kim Manning, Cedar Falls Tourism and Visitors Bureau; Shawna Lode, Iowa Tourism Office.

Cedar Valley receives Healthy Hometown Founder award

Mayor Jon Crews and Sue Beach receive award on behalf of Cedar Valley Blue Zones

Mayor Jon Crews and Sue Beach receive award on behalf of Cedar Valley Blue Zones. Pictured with Gov. Terry Branstad and Ltn. Gov. Kim Reynolds

Healthiest State Initiative recognize communities’ efforts to improve health and well-being

DES MOINES, IA (Nov. 2, 2016) — The cities of Cedar Falls and Waterloo were presented a Healthy HometownSM POWERED BY Wellmark award at the Iowa Healthiest State Initiative Bringing it Home conference on Nov.1, 2016. The award recognizes the Cedar Valley for their dedication and accomplishments toward meaningful health improvement initiatives in their community.

“The Healthy Hometown Founder award celebrates the achievements made in the Cedar Valley,” said Jami Haberl, Iowa Healthiest State Initiative executive director. “Cedar Falls and Waterloo have been a model for other Iowa communities and is an encouraging example of what can be done when the citizens of a community join together to truly transform their environment.”

Some noteworthy achievements in Cedar Falls include:

  • Integrating brain breaks in the schools as well as removing pop machines and unhealthy food fundraisers.
  • Building a new pedestrian bridge that connected residential areas with retailers, schools and workplaces.
  • Achieving a 20 percent increase in volunteering among employees at John Deere PEC.
  • Passing land protection policies that pave the way for healthy eating via farmers’ markets and community gardens.

Some noteworthy accomplishments in Waterloo include:

  • Logging 3,428 miles by Orange Elementary students during their first year of promoting physical activity through classroom movement and recess.
  • Losing a combined 1,661 pounds in one year resulting in 56 employees moving from pre-diabetic to normal range at Bertch Cabinet Manufacturing.
  • Constructing a multi-million dollar Highway 63 corridor project’s first phase featuring an impressive two-mile stretch with wide sidewalks, landscaping trees, brick pavers, lighting and benches.
  • Creating 10 gardens thought out the city, four of which are school gardens.

Healthy Hometown program available for all Iowa communities

The Healthy Hometown program is available to all Iowa communities ready to take steps to make the healthy choice the easy choice and improve the overall well-being of their communities.

“One of the best parts of the Healthy Hometown program is the ability for Iowa communities to make improvements that are important to them,” said Laura Jackson, Iowa Healthiest State Initiative board president. “The program offers various levels of support — including assistance from experts if they choose — and guides them to existing resources so they can make their hometown an even better place to live.”

There are three ways communities or organizations can get started. The first is an online self-assessment tool for communities to review where they are at today and how they can connect with existing resources to make enhancements. In 2017, two additional options will be available to help communities put a plan in place for either a specific project or a complete community transformation.

More information about the Healthy Hometown program, including the assessment and resources, is available at: www.iowahealthieststate.com.

GREATER CEDAR VALLEY ALLIANCE & CHAMBER TO HOLD FORUM ON WORKFORCE ISSUES

The Alliance & Chamber will host a forum to engage area business and institutions to address talent and workforce challenges in the Cedar Valley.  Addressing Workforce: Beyond the Numbers is for employers, educators, service organizations and other workforce partners to be held Thursday, September 29th from 7:30 -11:30am at the National Cattle Congress Pavilion, Waterloo.

Recent data compiled by the Alliance & Chamber projects that businesses in the Cedar Valley will need 12,000 additional workers in the next 10 years while, at the same time, the working-age population is expected to decrease.

During the forum, business leaders from a cross-section of industries will facilitate three separate discussion tracks. Human resource professionals, business managers from all industries, education leaders, and service providers who support business with workforce needs are encouraged to participate in the most relevant discussion track.

The three tracks include:

  1. Labor Force Participation (utilizing our existing population)
  2. Training & Education (training the future workforce)
  3. Talent Attraction & Retention (attracting new & retaining existing workforce)

The interactive format will provide opportunities for new connections, partnerships, peer-to-peer learning and a deeper understanding of how to collaborate in addressing our workforce needs for today and the future.

A light breakfast will be served at 7:30am.  The event is free. Registration is requested through the Alliance & Chamber website www.cedarvalleyalliance.com by September 16.

For more information on this event and the Talent Solutions initiatives of the Alliance & Chamber contact Danny Laudick by calling 319-232-1156 or by email to dlaudick@cedarvalleyalliance.com.

###

High-Capacity Broadband from Mediacom Business Powering University of Northern Iowa Metal Casting Center

 The following information was released by Mediacom Business

 New additive manufacturing and design facility utilizes bandwidth intensive applications to train and prepare manufacturers and students

Waterloo, IA – June 28, 2016Furthering its commitment to drive economic growth in the Cedar Valley corridor, Mediacom Business, a division of Mediacom Communications Corporation, today announced the installation of a high-capacity broadband connection at the new University of Northern Iowa (UNI) Metal Casting Center on the TechWorks Campus in downtown Waterloo.

Randy Pilkington, Director of Business and Community Services for UNI, said manufacturers and students alike will learn necessary design software skills at the UNI Metal Casting Center to develop products and prepare CAD documents in conjunction with Hawkeye Community College for 3D printing. The facility houses the largest sand mold 3D design printer in the country, and is installing three new 3D printers over the next several months using a variety of media.

“Our goal is make the facility at the UNI Metal Casting Center the go to place in Iowa, if not the Midwest, to expand additive manufacturing training of this kind. This is a huge initiative for Iowa. We feel confident that by partnering with Mediacom Business, we’ll receive the high-capacity broadband necessary to make this happen,” Mr. Pilkington said.

Dan Templin, Senior Vice President for Mediacom Business, said his company’s partnership with UNI exemplifies how critical it is to have a high-capacity broadband connection to power advanced technology platforms. “The design software needed to fuel expertise in sand mold printing used by companies like John Deere or Rockwell Collins requires high speed data. Without it, you simply can’t conduct the training needed. We’re especially glad to play such an important role in bringing business and education together via our proprietary fiber-optic network.”

Cary Darrah, TechWorks Vice President and General Manager, said Mediacom Business powered a TechWorks Campus StartUp event last November with 5 Gigabits of fiber connectivity. “Fast broadband was a necessity for the event – the first time StartUp Weekend was held on the Campus. Mediacom Business delivered the fastest connection to data that we’d used. Mediacom Business came through for TechWorks Campus and StartUp Weekend Cedar Valley participants. I believe that gave the Metal Casting Center a clear indication that Mediacom Business was a good solution at this location.”

About the University of Northern Iowa Metal Casting Center

The University of Northern Iowa Metal Casting Center was established in 1990 with a grant from the Iowa Lottery to serve foundries and foundry suppliers in Iowa. The UNI MCC has been a leader in foundry innovations and added 3D sand mold printing capabilities in 2014. Since then, the UNI MCC has worked with more than 100 small and medium enterprises across Iowa and the Midwest as well as with all branches of the US military.

About the TechWorks Campus

TechWorks Campus is a 30-acre advanced manufacturing, research & development, innovation, education, commercial, and manufacturing center located in downtown Waterloo, Iowa. The campus is comprised of 20 acres of development sites, and 300,000 square feet of flex space for innovation and development.

About Mediacom Communications

Mediacom Communications Corporation is the fifth largest cable operator in the U.S. serving about 1.3 million customers in smaller markets primarily in the Midwest and Southeast through its wholly-owned subsidiaries, Mediacom Broadband LLC and Mediacom LLC. Mediacom offers a wide array of information, communications and entertainment services to households and businesses, including video, high-speed data, phone, and home security and automation. Through Mediacom Business, the company provides innovative broadband solutions to commercial and public sector customers of all sizes, and sells advertising and production services under the OnMedia brand. More information about Mediacom is available at www.mediacomcc.com.

Contact
Tom Larsen
Senior Vice President, Government & Public Relations
Phone: 845-443-2754 | Email: info@mediacomcc.com

Confidence High in the Cedar Valley

IMG_1331

With building permits on the rise, new businesses opening, and investment being made in the Cedar Valley, Steve Dust, President and CEO of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber says confidence is high in the Cedar Valley business community. Listen to Steve’s comments  in this June 21st interview with Tim Harwood on News Talk KXEL.

 

 

Learn more about the Midwest Supply Chain Managers Survey here.

Mixed Use Project Construction Begins on TechWorks Campus

Construction has begun on the hotel on the TechWorks Campus in the Cedar Valley of Iowa.

Construction has begun on the hotel on the TechWorks Campus in the Cedar Valley of Iowa.

$40M hotel, training center, conference space, restaurant construction launch in Tech 2 building

Today, TechWorks Campus, a subsidiary of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, together with the City of Waterloo, Iowa Economic Development Authority, and Financial District Properties (FDP), celebrated the construction launch of the Courtyard by Marriott Hotel, John Deere Training Center, and restaurant in the Tech 2 building on the TechWorks Campus. The construction launch represents a significant step in the continued progress of developing The Green@TechWorks.

Governor Terry Branstad, Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds,  and Iowa Economic Development Authority representatives were present to celebrate the launch and its significance as one of the first designated Iowa Reinvestment Districts (IRD) and one of the first IRD project to get underway.

Tech 2, an 88-year old former John Deere tractor manufacturing building, is being transformed into The Green@TechWorks re-development project. The 180,000 square foot, six-story building will house a 191-room Courtyard by Marriott hotel; a new restaurant operated by Consolidated Restaurant Operations, Inc. (CRO); John Deere Regional Training Center and a conference center (managed by Courtyard). The Green project is a principal feature of the overall TechWorks Campus riverfront re-development.

Also celebrating the launch was hotel operator Hotel Specialists, Inc. (HSI) of Jacksonville, Illinois and restaurant operator Consolidated Restaurant Operations, Inc. (CRO) of Dallas, Texas.

The Green & Overall Project

The Green@TechWorks is part of the larger 33-acre TechWorks Campus. In addition to the Tech 1 and Tech 2 buildings (formerly John Deere Westfield R & C2) the campus includes parcels suitable for light manufacturing and retail. TechWorks Campus is the first technology park of its kind in Iowa to combine world class business amenities within a Brownfield redevelopment site.

The John Deere Waterloo Tractor & Engine Museum is already established in the Campus area, as is the Tech 1 Center for Applied Advanced Manufacturing, including the University of Northern Iowa’s Metal Casting and Additive (3D) Manufacturing Center and a Design Lab in partnership with Hawkeye Community College.

A marina and a riverfront restaurant along the Cedar River are also part of the overall $74.1 million Campus development plan.

“This is a momentous day for TechWorks, the city, and the state of Iowa,” says Cary Darrah, General Manager of TechWorks Campus. “Finally, the public can see the results of years of planning and the efforts of those who believed in the vision for this campus. This is the first of many celebrations to come!”

Downtown Momentum

TechWorks Campus is just steps to the Cedar Valley Recreation Trails, entertainment & museum districts, and a variety of Riverloop District amenities.

Other developments underway in the vicinity include: Grand Crossing mixed use residential/condominiums, Single Speed Brewery with Sidecar Coffee Shop, and Hawkeye Community College Urban Campus.

Construction of the Tech 2 building is now underway, with a projected hotel opening in Spring 2017.

TechWorks Campus is a private non-profit corporation and subsidiary of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber. More information can be found at www.techworkscampus.com or by contacting Cary Darrah, General Manager at cdarrah@cedarvalleyalliance.com, or Wes James Facilities Manager at wjames@cedarvalleyalliance.com, or by calling (319) 232-1156.

Find photos here.

Read more in the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier.

Development Team Contacts:

The Green@TechWorks – Financial District Properties: Rodney Blackwell 563-324-9898

City of Waterloo: Mayor Quentin Hart 319-291-4301 or

Economic Development Director Noel Anderson 319-291-4366

 

 

Manpower Receive 2016 Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber Diversity & Inclusion Award

Cedar Valley Manpower team celebrate their accomplishments.

Cedar Valley Manpower team celebrate their accomplishments.

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber presented their Annual Awards on Thursday, March 31, 2016.

Manpower creates customized programs to recruit and develop a workforce reflective of the Cedar Valley through effective partnerships with local agencies.

Access2Ability partnership with Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services (IVRS) provides job opportunities for those with a disability.

Collaboration with Iowa Workforce Development is putting formerly incarcerated candidates to work.  Department of Correction facilities have placed reformed job seekers from the Work Release program into jobs.

Manpower staff serves on the Refugee Resource committee led by Catholic Charities. The goal is to help integrate refugees from Myanmar into the Cedar Valley.  The Manpower team developed job opportunities and overcame language barriers by creating work teams of 3-4 refugees, with one member serving as translator.

Manpower provides job preparation advice to students at Waterloo West High and college students through Iowa Association of Business and Industry’s Leadership Iowa University program.

Regional Director Kathy Joblinski is an active member of the Alliance & Chamber’s Chamber Council, its Diversity & Inclusion Partnership, and she is also a member of the Chamber Council’s Workforce Committee.

View the video produced by Pyke Studios here.

View a video of the entire event, including acceptance speeches, produced by Cedar Falls Cable is here.

 

 

Hydrite Chemical Company set to make $15.9 million capital investment in Waterloo

Hydrite Chemical Company 2013

Hydrite Chemical Company set to make $15.9 million capital investment in Waterloo. Hydrite Chemical’s proposed project would increase manufacturing capabilities in Waterloo by expanding its product lines in the food, agriculture and sulfur industries. The board awarded the company tax benefits through the High Quality Jobs Program (HQJP). The project is expected to create 11 jobs at a qualifying wage of $16.79 per hour. The proposed project includes land acquisition, site preparation, the construction of a 20,000 s.f. building, and installation of manufacturing machinery and equipment and will have a capital investment of $15.9 million.

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber provided assistance to Hydrite. The Alliance & Chamber identified appropriate resources and tools available through the City of Waterloo and State of Iowa, and monitored the project throughout the process. State and local incentives were integral in Hydrite siting this project at their Waterloo location.

The Alliance & Chamber has provided assistance with previous Hydrite expansions. Since 2012, Hydrite has made more than $15 million in investment at the site.

Hydrite Chemical Company is one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of chemical products in the United States.  The company provides expertise in chemical distribution, food and dairy sanitation, food ingredients, organic processing, liquid sulfur salts, water treatment, foam control, and compliance management. The company began its Waterloo operations in 1978 where they currently have 86 full-time employees.

 

###

2016 Business of the Year (1-50- FTE) – JSA Development, LLC/James E. Walsh, Jr.

Jim Walsh accepts the Business of the Year Award.

Jim Walsh accepts the Business of the Year Award.

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber presented their Annual Awards on Thursday, March 31, 2016. Congratulations to JSA Development, LLC / James E. Walsh, Jr. recipient of 2016 Business of the Year!

Jim Walsh purchased his first building in downtown Waterloo in April 1999. Since that time, what has become JSA Development transformed Downtown Waterloo and the greater Cedar Valley.

JSA Development has invested nearly $35 million in downtown revitalization based in historic preservation, mixed-use development and walk-able, bike-able urban neighborhood planning.

The investment and commitment to Waterloo and the Cedar Valley is a significant component of the private investment in Downtown Waterloo envisioned by the original River Renaissance project.

To date, JSA Development investment has: Historically rehabilitated fourteen buildings; Created 50 new market-rate apartments; Revitalized or maintained over 40 commercial units; Assisted in the startup or expansion of eight business; Aided the historic KWWL building revitalization; Spearheaded and funded the successful addition of the Waterloo Downtown East 4th street corridor to the National Register of Historic Places.

In addition to the development and management Company, Walsh operates three restaurants and a bar in downtown Waterloo.  His many roles with other organizations broaden his impact on the greater Cedar Valley.

View video here.

 

 

 

 

Be part of something greater - The Cedar Valley of Iowa

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber is a regional economic community development corporation working to increase economic vitality and wealth in the Waterloo / Cedar Falls area and surrounding economic region. The Alliance & Chamber has approximately 800 members that represents over 40,000 employees