Excerpt from the Brownwood Bulletin

A plan to guide economic development in Brownwood over the next five years was laid out Friday to community leaders at the monthly luncheon of the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce. Now comes the implementation phase, Amy Holloway, president of Avalanche Consulting Inc. of Austin, said.

“Wow, a lot of surprising things are happening in Brownwood,” Holloway said at the close of a 30-minute presentation that highlighted the document her firm produced after six months of study led by a 26-member local committee that involved more than 50 participants.

Holloway said the next step will be to create an implementation team, follow a calendar and make assignments of tasks.

The plan identified the community’s strengths and challenges, its target audiences and a plan of action, Holloway said. The top priority, she said, is to expand and retain existing employers in health care, manufacturing, tourism and retail. The plan calls for the community to focus on internal matters for the first three or four years, and then consider looking out-of-town for recruiting new businesses.

Other priorities include encouraging entrepreneurship — having local people start and grow companies needed here — and recruitment of talent.

Important areas to address also include filling the talent pipeline, improving lifestyle amenities, tourism, expansion of housing options, and securing water sources and solidifying conservation efforts, because in the coming decades, availability of water will be vital to growth.

Read the full article in the Brownwood Bulletin.