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Lexington, Louisville leaders to take expedition to Charlotte

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Dec. 18, 2013) — For the second time since 2010, representatives of two of Kentucky’s largest chambers of commerce – Commerce Lexington Inc. and Greater Louisville Inc. – will come together for a joint intercity visit. The destination selected for the 2014 Leadership Expedition, June 1-3, is Charlotte, N.C. The trip is presented by CHASE/J.P. Morgan and LG&E/Kentucky Utilities Co.

Commerce Lexington Inc. has led its own intercity visits for 74 years, while Greater Louisville Inc.’s GLIDE trip has been occurring each year since 1985.

“Regionalism is essential to being competitive in today’s increasingly global economy,” said Stephen Gault of Stephen C. Gault Co., 2014 expedition co-chair. “The timing is right for a joint trip. It will provide a great opportunity to build on the strong collaboration we have right now between the two cities, which will further strengthen our region and help position us for future success.”

Commerce Lexington and Greater Louisville have “worked together for years in economic development, public policy, and regional marketing,” said expedition co-chair Ken Sagan of Stites & Harbsion. “With the ongoing Bluegrass Economic Advancement Movement report and the Kentucky Export Initiative, it made sense to heighten the collaborative process through this joint leadership expedition.”

Charlotte and its region boast many Fortune 500 companies, rapid job growth, and national recognition as a great place to start a small business and America’s most livable community. Charlotte has the second-largest banking center in the nation and is known for exceptional ease of access with many non-stop flights at its airport.

The area is also home to Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC), which has six campuses and is a national leader in workforce development.  CPCC and Siemens garnered national attention in 2012, when President Barack Obama mentioned the CPCC/Siemens partnership in his State of the Union address, stressing the importance of community college partnerships with industry and workforce training.

Charlotte also has a large utilities industry, sizable manufacturing segment and a growing number of international companies. Participants from Lexington and Louisville will be able to examine the area’s attributes and challenges in advanced manufacturing, regionalism, entrepreneurship and workforce initiatives.

For more information, visit leadershipvisit.commercelexington.com.