The presentation from the Q1 2017 Clay EDC Luncheon is now available to VIEW HERE.  We sincerely thank those who support the work of Clay EDC!  Event photos are HERE.

"I choose Clay County to locate my high-tech company because the labor pool, which traditionally would commute an hour was readily available minutes away from our office. The move raised all of our employees quality of living and happiness, allowing me to recruit top talent and keep them."

Brian Knight
Co-Founder, Pragmatic Works


"I truly appreciate the effort you have put in to move this along!  In my 26 years in the development business, I have rarely received this type of support!"

Kent Gregory
MGB Development Group


"Clay EDC has proven to be a vital resource for Calavo's expansion into the southeast U.S.  Assisting in early-stage due diligence thru the move-in and operational start-up of our Green Cove Springs facility, Clay EDC has been a go-to source for information, contacts and relevant solutions to often complex issues."

Mike Browne
Vice President, Calavo Growers Inc.

"For any business - what could be better than 60,000 people of all skills eager to work closer to home.
Clay County has that and a high quality of life in a safe environment to raise a family.  With great schools added it's a 'no brainer' for me."
 Jerry Agresti
CEO and Founder, Developers Realty Group
"Clay County is uniquely positioned for the distribution of our marine products.  We have effectively extended our reach, decreased our freight transit times and lowered both inbound and outbound freight costs.  Lower expenses, business friendly and first class port access have combined to deliver us to the next level."

Edward Gaw
President, Hi-Liner Fishing Equipment & Tackle, Inc.

Most Recent

Clay Career and Technical Education Pathways Create Pipelines for High-Demand Positions
Clay Career and Technical Education Pathways Create Pipelines for High-Demand Positions
Before the crisis reaches critical mass, companies have begun the search for a remedy. And for many, the solution comes from education. “We have a lot of aging employees,” in ther wastewater treatment plants, said Celeste Laffy, public information officer for CCUA. “It’s not really sexy, but it’s something that we all have to rely on. And when you ask kids when they’re in school what they want to be, they always think of really interesting careers, and you can’t really imagine most of them saying ‘hey, I want to be a wastewater operator.’” Two years ago, the utility began an internship program with the Clay County School District to reach out to students who may be interested in related fields, whether it be environmental sciences, engineering or technology. That’s how Estevez first got involved. “I wanted to work with my hands, be outside, have on the job training,” said Estevez, a graduate of Middleburg High. “I didn’t even know it was a job, wastewater operators, people don’t even think about it.” It’s reasons like this that contribute to the utility’s worker age range ...
Marine Corps and Boeing Resurrect F/A-18 Fighters
Boeing is working to tackle the problem. The company is on contract to bring 22 legacy F/A-18C Hornets out of a U.S. military “boneyard” in the Arizona desert, and reconstitute and upgrade them so that they can rejoin the Marine Corps fleet. The effort is known as the “C+ program.” When the U.S. military shrank in the years after the Cold War, a number of Hornets were mothballed at a storage facility at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona. Bill Maxwell, a former Marine aviator who now serves as Boeing’s senior manager of F/A-18 operations, had to fly one of the planes out to the boneyard where he expected it to “rot in the desert” indefinitely. “It was a sad deal,” he said. “I thought that I would never see these jets fly again. … [But] we’re bringing them out of the desert now and bringing these warfighting machines that still have life left in them to put them back out and hand them to a warfighter.” The C+ work is being performed at Boeing’s Cecil Field facilities in Jacksonville, Florida. During ...
A Bright Future Lies Ahead for a Middleburg High School Student Participating in a Career and Technical Education Program
Lindsey’s daily duties at the treatment plant include upkeep of the grounds, calibrations of lab equipment, cleaning and maintaining filters and clarifiers, running process control tests and other things to maintain the treatment plant. Lindsey’s advice to an incoming freshman is “If they don’t already have a set plan of what they want to do, they should definitely consider doing this program because it is a field that is not going to diminish.  It offers great benefits and gets your foot in the door of opportunity for a lifelong career.” "The Clay County School District and The Clay County Utility Authority have a great partnership in helping to prepare students for college and career readiness.  The internship program is an amazing way to benefit the utility authority, the school district and most importantly, the student.  These internships allow for the student to explore careers in their community and to get a taste of the real world.  This partnership is a win - win - win - for everyone" said Chereese Stewart, Director of Clay County Schools’ Career and Technical Education program. Clay ...
Florida Contractors Want to Hire but Have Found a Tight Labor Market. Clay's Vocational Training Eases Shortfall
However, about 84 percent of contractors anticipate experiencing more difficulty finding appropriately skilled labor. Christina Thomas, training director of the Northeast Florida Builders Association, wasn’t surprised to learn about the findings from the ABC. “The Baby Boomers are retiring and it’s difficult attracting people into the industry,” Thomas said. “I’ve heard it said before, the number one thing that’s driving up costs in the construction industry is labor.” Thomas runs one of the several accredited apprenticeship programs in Northeast Florida. In recent years, NEFBA has partnered with several schools across the region, mainly in Clay County since their school system has not cut vocational training as deeply as in Duval. The program has 16 instructors and teaches across four construction disciplines: carpentry, electrical, HVAC and plumbing. The four-year program has about 210 students currently enrolled. The program is in its open period right now, which runs through June 30. The carpentry program has year-round enrollment. When a student gradates from the program they will have earned 8,000 hours of on the job experience and 600 hours of classroom instruction. Thomas believes that high school students often do ...
Clay's Defense Sector Continues to Strengthen - Welcome Fleet Readiness Center Southeast!
Clay's Defense Sector Continues to Strengthen - Welcome Fleet Readiness Center Southeast!
FRCSE is the largest industrial employer in Northeast Florida with 3,000 civilian personnel and 1,000 military personnel. From FRCSE’s website: “Fleet Readiness Center Southeast (FRCSE) is the largest tenant command aboard Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fl., with several offsite locations. Established in 1940, the facilities at FRCSE have turned out almost every type of Navy aircraft - fighter and attack planes, patrol, antisubmarine, reconnaissance, transport, trainer, special configuration and helicopters. The overall workload for FRCSE has expanded to include the rework of engines, components, and ground support equipment, plus other support functions vital to the Fleet.” Clay EDC was initially introduced to FRCSE by Clay Chamber President, Doug Conkey, in the summer of 2016. Clay EDC worked with them for several months to find the right real estate option that fit their very specific criteria. Clay County’s economy will benefit greatly from this consolidation, especially restaurants and other retailers in the Wells Road area. Many of FRCSE employees are already Clay County residents, and their drive to work just got a lot easier. Initially the new FRCSE office will have 70 ...
Read More »