Biz Roundup: Rowan EDC unveils new tools to help employers gauge workforce

Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 31, 2021

SALISBURY — The Rowan Economic Development Council has partnered with Localintel to provide visual data tools to help workforce development.

The first tools are being used on the Rowan EDC’s workforce website page. The workforce tool helps employers understand the size, strength and diversity of the workforce that includes 1.4 million people within a 60-minute drive.

The Talent Pipeline tool provides detailed information on the network of universities and colleges that drive workforce supply and innovation in the economy, including the number of students enrolled by area of study at higher education institutions such as Catawba College, Livingstone College and Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, as well as those outside the county.

“In today’s age, people want to spend less time reading and more time interacting with visually appealing content,” Jay Garneau, Rowan EDC marketing and communications manager, said in a news release. “We are optimistic that these tools will help current and prospective employers learn more effectively about the workforce and talent pipeline in and around Rowan County.”

More information and access to these tools can be found online at

Voting remains open as Downtown Salisbury contends for $25,000 cash prize

SALISBURY — Voting is still open for those who wish to support Downtown Salisbury’s bid for a $25,000 cash prize.

Downtown Salisbury is competing in the Independent We Stand Main Street small-business program. Downtown Salisbury is encouraging residents, business owners and visitors to vote for Salisbury in the quarterfinals at before Nov. 7.

Independent We Stand, a national small business movement, kicked-off its sixth annual America’s Main Streets contest titled “Road to Recovery” in September. The three-month-long, online contest is designed to help consumers, small business owners and Main Street organizations reward a deserving downtown with $25,000 in cash and sponsor-related prizes.

The cash prize would go to help downtown businesses.

Quarterfinalist voting will conclude on Nov. 7, semifinalist voting will commence on Nov. 15 and the winner will be announced on Dec. 20.

Two Salisbury startups receive funding from NC IDEA foundation

SALISBURY — The NC IDEA foundation recently awarded $220,000 to 22 North Carolina startups, including two in Rowan County.

The local startups that received funding are Home for Life Design and Three Strands Recovery Wear, both of which are based in Salisbury.

NC IDEA, a private foundation committed to supporting entrepreneurial ambition and economic empowerment in North Carolina, just completed its seventh NC IDEA MICRO grant cycle. Since the inaugural cycle in Spring 2018, NC IDEA MICRO has awarded nearly $1.2 million to 118 young companies across the state.

Through small, project-based grants, NC IDEA MICRO awards $10,000 in funding to young companies looking to validate and advance their idea. The program piloted in Spring 2018, was created as an expansion of the Foundation’s long-standing SEED grant program to provide funding to younger, promising startups not yet positioned for the Foundation’s traditional $50,000 grants.

“With such a strong group of applicants, this is the most grant recipients we have awarded in one cycle,” Thom Ruhe, president and CEO of NC IDEA, said in a news release. “This cycle drew a record number of applications, particularly from our rural communities. We are seeing a clear need from all parts of the state for funding and support to help these companies grow,” Ruhe added.


City of Kannapolis seeks food and craft vendors for Celebration of Lights Holiday Market

KANNAPOLIS — The city of Kannapolis Parks and Recreation Department is currently accepting applications for craft and food vendors for the Celebration of Lights Holiday Market from Nov. 20 – Dec. 30. 

The Celebration of Lights at Village Park is a yearly tradition during which the Kannapolis park is decked out in 250,000 lights on a nightly basis. In addition to the light displays throughout the park, other nightly activities include roasting marshmallows and making s’mores or visiting with Santa in his studio.

This year, craft vendors will be at Village Park so that people can shop locally and find holiday gifts. Craft vendors will be at the park Thursday through Sunday and food vendors will be at the park daily this year. Applications are due Nov. 7.

Applications available here: 

Craft vendor application:

Food vendor application:–nP7ozr0JQdlcei5q2XS_AMEVyQ8Q9xwJRz6CmsnUPY

More information is available at

About Ben Stansell

Ben Stansell covers business, county government and more for the Salisbury Post. He joined the staff in August 2020 after graduating from the University of Alabama. Email him at

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