EDWARDSVILLE – The Southwest Illinois Trade and Investment Council held its quarterly meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 26, at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.
Madison County Community Development Administrator Frank Miles said the group is expanding its reach as well as making major steps toward incorporation as a nonprofit organization.
“The Southwest Illinois Trade and Investment Council added a new board member as well as two ex-officio members. We are now partnered with the Illinois Manufacturing Excellence Center and the Southwest Region of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity,” Miles said. “We also appointed a board member from Monroe County. This expands the council’s footprint and begins to incorporate the counties named in our initial objectives. Furthermore, the council is continuing to work toward incorporation as a nonprofit organization, a necessary step in the achievement of our goals.”
SWIL TIC also reported its initial budget, which so far is comprised of contributions from participating businesses and government sponsors. These funds will be used for general startup costs including incorporation, marketing, and website development.
The council hosted guests World Trade Center St. Louis, who gave a presentation about the Global Cities Initiative launched by JPMorgan Chase and Brookings Institute. Speakers Ana Romero-Lizana, Sean Mullins and Larry Taylor outlined the work of the Global Cities Initiative, its selection of St. Louis as one of eight participating areas in 2015, and the initiative’s goals for the St. Louis area. Additionally, SWIL TIC appointed a representative to partner with the Global Cities Initiative.
The aim of this initiative is to help U.S. metropolitan area leaders structure their economies toward greater involvement in global markets. Through the Global Cities Initiative, World Trade Center St. Louis is aiming to grow global trade relationships and utilize integrated international strategies in order to position St. Louis for high quality growth and competitiveness. Miles said these partnerships will further assist World Trade Center St. Louis as well as provide more involvement and network capability for the council.
“Having a place at the table for the Global Cities Initiative allows the council to understand and participate in the work being done to bolster international trade in the St. Louis region,” Miles said. “The Southwest Illinois Trade and Investment Council is continuing to make connections that will help us further achieve our purpose of strategizing for heightened use of global trade in the Southwestern Illinois region.”