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Delaware Governor: Jack Markell

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  Archived Posts From: 2010


Alan Levin: Manufacturing Week

Written on: March 25th, 2010 in Guest Posts

Levin_Alan_2x2_72dpiIt’s an honor to be invited to guest post on Governor Markell’s blog. Yesterday, as the Governor spoke at the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce’s Legislative Brunch and Manufacturing Conference, he proclaimed this week Manufacturing Week in Delaware.

The manufacturing industry is key to Delaware’s economic recovery. Manufacturing makes up a significant portion of Delaware’s workforce, employing approximately 27,000 Delawareans.

At the Delaware Economic Development Office, we realize that we need to do everything we can to ensure the success of our businesses. We continue to work hard every day to make Delaware more attractive to businesses and more conducive to job creation.

Advanced Aerosol CEO RJ Valentine chose to invest here rather than his home state "Delaware gets it."

As DEDO meets with businesses across the state, we recognize that the future of manufacturing in Delaware looks bright. We understand the importance of assisting the industry in order to strengthen our economy. As a result the state continues to assist businesses like Advanced Aerosol, Baltimore Aircoil, PTM Manufacturing and many others expand.

Advanced Aerosol resumed operations at its plant in Seaford. They will create 53 full-time jobs, providing an estimated economic impact of $21.3 million to the state of Delaware.  At the event, CEO RJ Valentine said he chose to invest here, rather than his home state of Massachusetts because when it comes to business, “Delaware gets it.”

Baltimore Aircoil Company, a worldwide manufacturer and marketer of heat transfer and ice thermal storage products, is expanding its manufacturing operations in Milford. The company was awarded a performance-based grant which will create 83 new manufacturing jobs in Delaware over two years. 

Baltimore Aircoil is expanding its facility, creating 83 new jobs

PTM  Manufacturing was awarded a Delaware Strategic Fund loan enabling it to expand its line of cost-effective green energy ducting and insulation system products nationwide.  The state’s investment is expected to help PTM create 23 new jobs in its first year and up to a total of 67 jobs within three years.

In addition, as the door closed on GM’s Boxwood plant last June, another door opened. Fisker Automotive’s plans to build their plug-in hybrid sedan at the plant will create 2,500 direct and indirect jobs. Bernard Koehler confirmed Fisker’s commitment to working with local suppliers in his keynote address at Wednesday’s Legislative Brunch.

We have worked hard to not only assist Delaware’s manufacturing industry, but all businesses in Delaware and DEDO will continue to do so. It is our goal to make Delaware the State of Business today.

If you have any questions regarding how DEDO can help your businesses, please contact us at 302-739-4271.

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Social Media: Growing our Economy through a Stronger Community

Written on: March 24th, 2010 in Job Creation

Last week, I had the pleasure of speaking with a few social media thought leaders, including Chris Brogan.  Chris graciously spent time meeting with many of our online innovators to discuss how we can make Delaware the “First State of Social Media.”  The feedback I’ve heard so far—and read through Twitter—has been overwhelmingly enthusiastic.

People have asked me: “Why do you have a Facebook page?” and “Why are you on Twitter?”

Here are three reasons why I am exploring and engaging through social media:

  1. Delaware is the State of Neighbors, and social media is another channel through which we can strengthen our community. Our people—whether they’re from business, nonprofits, government, academic institutions or other groups—know how to work together.  We get the right people in the room, and we move fast. Companies like Fisker have told me that this is one of the reasons they chose to grow their business in Delaware.
  2. Delawareans are helping each other promote our small businesses and nonprofits through social media within our state and beyond. When people find a great service, activity or product, they spread the word to help our businesses thrive and create jobs.  Social media knows few boundaries, and we need to make sure that people know what’s so special about our state.
  3. We need your creative ideas to ensure that Delaware is the best place to start and grow a business. Your dialogue can lead to innovation and economic development.  Your suggestions will make government more efficient, effective, and responsive.   

There are so many amazing things happening in our state, and we need to get the word out. Join the grassroots discussion through Twitter, using #NetDE, or at this Facebook page.

I hope you enjoy the video below – courtesy of The Delaware Film Company – showing part of my conversation with Chris Brogan.


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We Keep Moving: National MS Society

Written on: March 22nd, 2010 in Helping Our Neighbors

On Friday, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society launched their first video story at  Here’s the theme of the awareness campaign:

“Moving forward is what life is all about. We Keep Moving is a site for people affected by multiple sclerosis – unique stories about what it means to live with MS and journeys of overcoming the obstacles – how we each keep moving in our own way. Join us as we embark on a ten-week journey across the country and hear from ten amazing individuals about how they keep moving regardless of multiple sclerosis.”

The message and the stories I’ve heard so far are relevant and inspirational for all of us.

Earlier this month, I was surprised to be named “Governor of the Year” by the National MS Society.  It was truly an honor, even more so because I had the opportunity to meet so many dedicated, warm-hearted and interesting people.

I know that the Delaware Chapter works extremely hard to help people with MS move their lives forward.  In fact, right now they’re busy getting ready for this year’s Walk MS events on April 17th I want to thank them for their ongoing efforts.

Standing (L to R) are National MS Society, Delaware Chapter, board members Lawrence D. Green and Maria C. Schaffer; Debra Veenema, the chapter’s director of programs and services; board member Heyward Damon, Jr.; Gov. Jack Markell; board member Diana Caine; Kate Cowperthwait, the chapter’s president; and seated are Marie Eldreth, the chapter’s coordinator of programs and advocacy, and MS advocate Darnell Trower.

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Teamwork & Vision for Success in Our Schools

Written on: March 17th, 2010 in Education

Delaware’s team finished our presentation to the panel of national experts reviewing our Race to the Top application today.  I was honored to lead our delegation, and grateful for the opportunity to work closely with such outstanding professionals.

Thank you to all of those who were engaged in this process, including the team members with me today:

  • Mervin B. Daugherty, Ed. D., Red Clay Consolidated School District Superintendent
  • Diane T. Donohue, Delaware State Education Association President
  • Lillian M. Lowery, Ed. D., Delaware Secretary of Education
  • Marvin N. Schoenhals, Former WFSF Financial Corporation CEO & Vision 2015 Chair

Our team was diverse, representing tremendous and high-level cooperation around a bold plan for change.  Whether or not we are one of the few states to win funding, the real victory here is evident in the team we have mobilized. We believe in our plan and have already taken steps to make it happen.  We have made real changes together – teachers, administrators, the business community and state government.

I also appreciate the efforts of President Obama, Secretary Duncan and others at the Department of Education to create a program and an atmosphere that incentivizes states to strive. As the Chair of the Democratic Governor’s Association and the chair of the National Governor’s Association’s Common Core Standards Initiative, I have seen the positive impact this process has had across the country.

Our nation’s governors know that getting people back to work and improving our schools are among the most immediate issues we’re facing – and stronger schools are fundamental to our long-term economic success.

We are proud to participate in a process that encourages states to make clear their goals for student achievement and lay out in great detail how they plan to achieve them.  Reform does not spring from bold pronouncements alone. Change requires teamwork, cooperation and a sense of shared vision. I think what’s unique about Delaware is how much we have taken that to heart.

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The Polar Bear Plunge!

Written on: March 15th, 2010 in Helping Our Neighbors

I had a great time on Sunday at the annual Polar Bear Plunge for Special Olympics.  People came from all over Delaware to have fun for a good cause.  It was an honor to meet the athletes, and I could barely feel the cold!

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