This year marks Bay Future, Inc.’s 15th year leading economic development efforts throughout Bay County, Michigan. Through that time, BFI has worked closely with many of our community’s large industrial and commercial industries and employers helping to solve their barriers for growth, their need for expansion, or their desire to create quality jobs.
In 2004, elected Bay County and City of Bay City representatives, along with business and community leaders, recognized a need to focus on economic opportunities in Bay County. The community had not weathered the short recession of 2000 through 2002 well, and the industrial climate in the community had changed. In an effort to gain insight and recommendations on the most effective tactics to move the community forward, Dean Whittaker of Whittaker and Associates along with Jay Garner of Garner Economics, LLC. (formerly Competitive Strategies Group, LLC.) were hired to identify; impediments to growth in Bay County, analyze existing assets related to economic, community, and workforce development, and recommendations to take Bay County in to a viable economic future.
One-on-one interviews and town hall meetings were facilitated with business and community members that culminated in The Whittaker Study or Whittaker Report, a comprehensive economic analysis of Bay County.
The most definitive outcome from the study and report was the formulation of Bay Future, Inc. Charged with facilitating economic development strategies in Bay County, Bay Future is a partnership of public (government bodies) and private sector (business) organizations that have joined together to promote job growth and retention in the community.
Here we are now, fifteen years later, an organization that has experienced many changes, serving a community that has evolved. In the last fifteen years, Bay Future has supported numerous businesses in the creation and retention of more than 3,600 jobs and worked with businesses to facilitate over $1.5 billion in new capital investment.
While time has passed, our core purpose has remained the same- to aid Bay County’s economy and to assist businesses in creating quality jobs for our community residents.
Below are links to the lists and articles Bay County has been recognized in with coverage our community has been receiving:
- Single Millennials Were Most Likely to Buy a Home in These Cities According to Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker
- Bay City Recognized in Top 10 for US Cities Where Incomes Are Growing at the Fastest Pace
- Digital Transformation: A Safer Supply Chain
- Crain's Michigan Business: Saginaw and Bay City Boomtowns Once Again
- Big City Amenities, Small Town Feel
- Tired of Big-City Squeeze? Score a Bargain in America's 10 Cheapest Housing Markets
- PRESS RELEASE: 2017 eCities research recognizes Bay City and Bangor Township
- Business Facilities 12th Annual Metro Rankings (Bay County, MI Top 10 Logistics Leader)
- Bay City Recognized as Top 10 Most Affordable Small Cities
- Bay City Recognized as Top 10 Places to Live Cheaply