Shawano Country Vision 2017 is a five-year economic development plan strategically designed to address various needs of area businesses and communities. The plan’s overall goal is to spur capital investment and grow the economy by implementing specific action steps in key areas, including business expansion, attraction and recruitment; tourism/retail development and community and workforce development. This plan was initiated four years ago by the board of directors of Shawano County Economic Progress Inc. and the Shawano Country Chamber of Commerce to proactively tackle economic challenges including several plant closures, job losses, and lower than average per capita income. It provides a blueprint for future growth and prosperity and a stronger economic climate for Shawano and Menominee Counties.
The measurable impacts of Shawano Country Vision 2017 are very positive. Sine the launch of this initiative, Shawano County Economic Progress has helped local companies secure funding of more than $20 million in support of over 700 new jobs and over $51 million in capital investment in the region. They have provided individual assistance to over 125 businesses. Unemployment has decreased from 8.8% to 4.5%, weekly wages have increased from $518 to $580, and average household income has increased by $1,847.