Grand Lansing business leaders want to attract and retain top talent, grow their businesses, and create good jobs and new income for the community. Residents want to see progress and prosperity in the economy and in their lives. The regional leadership of the Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) continues to be a central force in meeting these needs.
Other regions have benefited from decades of regional economic development agencies pursuing their economic growth strategies. Our region has missed opportunities for growth in the past, as these regions have reaped the fruits of their collective efforts.
Our regional economic development agency, LEAP, is celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2021. Today, the Clinton, Eaton and Ingham counties region competes as well or better than any region in the country to create good jobs and opportunities. significant revenues for quality public services such as parks. , roads, schools and public safety.
LEAP projects have garnered $ 3 billion in direct private investment, creating more than 6,000 direct, quality jobs. LEAP has also contributed to the creation of 150 new startups through its work to develop a strong and inclusive regional entrepreneurial ecosystem. In addition, the multiplier effects of these jobs, investments and business creation on all aspects of small businesses, neighborhoods and suppliers of goods and services are felt in every corner of our region.
LEAP’s vital work relies on partners such as the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), local municipalities, leading educational institutions, our private sector, and most importantly, investors who provide LEAP with the financial means to continue this work of collective leadership.
This investment in LEAP has created a larger and more diverse regional economy, ready for the kind of growth we all deserve and want. Momentum is on our side, and with that momentum, it’s time to double our economic development efforts.
In 2021, LEAP helped the Shyft Group grow and create hundreds of jobs to support a significant expansion of the project. LEAP has attracted new international companies, such as McKesson and Amazon. Mixed-use buildings stood on the horizon of the city’s main corridors. LEAP set a record for securing business accelerator funds, essential MEDC grants for high-tech startups. The fourth of six “One & All” inclusive entrepreneurship programs is underway, empowering entrepreneurs from underserved demographics to build successful businesses.
LEAP created the Department of Fair Economic Planning (DEEP) to unleash the full potential of the local economy. LEAP was awarded a $ 1 million MedTech EDA grant to expand our MedTech / healthcare industry cluster. And LEAP has helped nearly 1,500 small businesses in the region stay afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic, distributing more than $ 20 million in state and federal emergency funds.
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Site Selection Magazine recently named LEAP as one of the top 20 regional economic development agencies in the country. This award is intended for all LEAP investors and our entire community – businesses large and small, entrepreneurs and everyone in the region.
This type of growth doesn’t just happen. It results from the risk-taking and strategic choices of developers, companies and entrepreneurs in partnership with a leading regional economic development agency such as LEAP.
For 15 years, LEAP investors have been Stronger Together, and we prove it.
Lisa Corless is President and CEO of the leading insurance solutions provider AF Group and Secretary of the Board of LEAP. Tim Salisbury is the Mid-Michigan Regional Chairman of PNC Financial Services Group and Chairman of the Board of LEAP.