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Public invited to hear nationally recognized site selection consultant

By Mark Wineka
mwineka@salisburypost.com
A nationally recognized site selection consultant will be a guest of the Salisbury-Rowan Economic Development Commission for two days in September.
Mark Sweeney of McCallum Sweeney Consulting will present a program at 6 p.m. Sept. 9 at the Tom E. Smith Auditorium in Ketner Hall on the Catawba College campus.
The program, “Prepared Communities Win,” will provide an overview of the industrial site selection process and key criteria involved in location decisions. It also will provide examples of how communities can compete more effectively to secure new jobs and taxable investment.
Robert Van Geons, executive director of the local EDC, said numerous case studies will be cited, and the audience will have time for questions.
Refreshments will be offered beginning at 5:30 that night.
The presentation will last from 6 to 7:15 p.m., with “networking” to follow until 8 p.m.
The event is open to the public, but seating is limited. People interested should contact Bettina Dickert at 704-637-5526 or e-mail her at dickertb@rowanedc.com.
Sweeney also will be staying in Salisbury Sept. 10 and meeting with local officials, possibly at a lunch, though details have yet to be worked out.
Sweeney, who lives in Greenville, S.C., is a senior principal in his company, which provides site selection services and economic development consulting to companies and organizations worldwide.
Recent clients of the company have included LM Glasfiber, PACCAR, Berg Pipe, Cytec Materials, Oreck, Nissan and Michelin.
His 2005 involvement with Nissan dealt with the company’s headquarters relocation from Los Angeles to Nashville, Tenn.
He has conducted siting projects throughout most of the United States and in Europe and Asia.
His economic development clients have included Duke Energy, the Tennessee Valley Authority, Southern California Edison and the states of Oklahoma and Tennessee.
He spent more than five years with the S.C. Department of Commerce, serving as director of research and communication. Sweeney has a master’s in education from Clemson University and a bachelor’s degree from Appalachian State University.
Sponsors for Sweeney’s program include the Ketner School of Business at Catawba College, the Rowan County Chamber of Commerce, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas, RowanWorks and Centralina Workforce Development.

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