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Fox Cities Regional Partnership Talent Upload program earns international Best in Show Award

By Business Wire News   


The Fox Cities Regional Partnership is the 2015 winner of the Best in Show for Excellence in Economic Development Award from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), the world’s largest membership organization serving the economic development profession, for its Spring 2015 Talent Upload program.

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Manny Vasquez (left) and Beth Pritzl (second from left) of the Fox Cities Regional Partnership are p ...

Manny Vasquez (left) and Beth Pritzl (second from left) of the Fox Cities Regional Partnership are presented with the IEDC 2015 Best in Show Award for Excellence in Economic Development by JoAnn Crary, chair of IEDC (second from right), and Karen Dickson, chair of the IEDC Awards Advisory Committee (right). (Photo: Business Wire)

IEDC’s Excellence in Economic Development Awards recognize the world’s best economic development programs and partnerships, marketing materials, and most influential leaders for their efforts in creating positive change in urban, suburban and rural communities. The Talent Upload program, which sought to attract on-demand computer science, IT and engineering talent to the Fox Cities, was chosen for the Best in Show Award. This prestigious award is presented to the best entry out of nearly 500 entries in 24 categories of promotional, programmatic, and partnership awards.

“The IEDC Awards Committee was very impressed by the Fox Cities Regional Partnership’s Talent Upload program,” said Jeff Finkle, President and CEO of IEDC. “In today’s ultra-competitive economy, it’s crucial for communities to be proactive in meeting the workforce demands of local employers to help them grow. Talent Upload is evidence that the Regional Partnership, its investors and supporters understand this. Congratulations to this forward-thinking organization on winning this year’s coveted Best in Show Award!”

The Talent Upload program was also chosen as a winner of the Gold Excellence in Economic Development Award in the category of Special Event for communities with populations of 200,000-500,000.

“To have the Talent Upload program recognized at this level is an exciting achievement for the Regional Partnership,” said Shannon Full, president/CEO of the Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce. “We’re thrilled with the success of the program and the international recognition, however the true beneficiaries are the local companies that are able to hire young professionals and our local communities that will be positively impacted by these young people living and working here. We are grateful for our many partners that have made this a success, and look forward to growing the program.”

“Talent Upload directly addresses the talent needs and challenges voiced by our area’s primary employers, whose support was crucial in the success of this initiative,” said Manny Vasquez, vice president of the Fox Cities Regional Partnership. “It’s humbling to receive such a prestigious award from an organization that represents more than 4,500 economic developers across the world, especially knowing that it has been judged by peers in our industry. This definitely raises the bar for our organization and we’re proud to have the opportunity to represent our community with this award and program.”

For three days in mid-April, the Fox Cities Regional Partnership hosted its first-ever Talent Upload Fox Cities Tour, an all-expense-paid career exploration and community familiarization program for 71 students from 16 universities throughout the Midwest. The primary goal of the program was to provide students with first-hand knowledge of the entry-level career and internship opportunities available in the Fox Cities. Over the course of their stay, students attended on-site company tours and networking events with leaders from some of the area’s largest employers. The program also focused on exposing the students to the Fox Cities and what it has to offer to young professionals. The group heard from a young professionals tech panel, explored the area’s entertainment options and raced for prizes in a community scavenger hunt.

The Regional Partnership received its Best in Show and Special Event awards this October at the IEDC 2015 Annual Conference in Anchorage, Alaska. A second Talent Upload is scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 5 through Saturday, Nov. 7. For more information, please visit

Fox Cities Regional Partnership is the economic development division of the Fox Cities Chamber. It exists for the purpose of strengthening our local economy by supporting local job creation through the retention, expansion and attraction of primary employers. The Regional Partnership serves as the point of contact for local businesses seeking assistance with workforce retention/attraction, labor training, funding, government advocacy, building and land opportunities, research (including demographic and economic information) and other individual needs. The Regional Partnership serves the communities of Outagamie, Calumet Counties, and northern Winnebago counties.

The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is a non-profit membership organization serving economic developers. With more than 4,600 members, IEDC is the largest organization of its kind. Economic developers promote economic well-being and quality of life for their communities, by creating, retaining and expanding jobs that facilitate growth, enhance wealth and provide a stable tax base. From public to private, rural to urban, and local to international, IEDC’s members are engaged in the full range of economic development experience. Given the breadth of economic development work, our members are employed in a wide variety of settings including local, state, provincial and federal governments, public private partnerships, chambers of commerce, universities and a variety of other institutions. When we succeed, our members create high-quality jobs, develop vibrant communities, and improve the quality of life in their regions. For more information visit

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Lisa Cruz
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