The year has come and gone in a flash, but as always, we must take a moment to acknowledge all we accomplished with and through EDC’s 200 investors. On the heels of the pandemic and a return to ‘normal’ that will never feel quite normal again, EDC’s Top 10 in 2022 included a new board chair, team and board members, and increased commitments to the Inclusive Growth goals we set for 2030. See it all in our year in review below:
- Supported 165 companies across the region.
With a suite of services from talent pipeline development to site selection, permitting, and export consulting, EDC’s core economic development work supported 9,906 jobs in 2022. Key wins include Element Biosciences’ expansion and creation of 280 local jobs, Rady Children’s Hospital hiring six former interns following involvement in the Advancing San Diego program, and support of ASML’s application for $14 million in Cal Competes incentives to generate more than 600 quality jobs, among others.
- Welcomed Jennie Brooks as board chair.
A longtime board member and a senior leader at a major consulting and technology employer in San Diego, Jennie Brooks took the gavel in June for her two year term as Chair. She is flanked by four officers: Vice Chair, Rob Douglas, President & COO, ResMed; Vice Chair of Inclusive Growth, Lisette Islas, EVP & Chief Impact Officer, MAAC; Treasurer, Tom Seidler, SVP Community & Military Affairs, San Diego Padres; and Secretary, Barbara Wight, CFO, Taylor Guitars.
- Rallied commitments to Inclusive Growth.
City, County, and private sector leaders pledged their public commitments to the region’s Inclusive Growth goals, increasing the number of skilled talent, quality jobs, and thriving households critical to San Diego’s competitiveness and resilience. As part of the forum, EDC shared the region’s progress against the 2030 goals in a new report.
- Led talent strategies to develop and attract talent.
To build a diverse regional workforce and meet industry demand, EDC continued to lead its Advancing San Diego (ASD) and San Diego: Life. Changing. (SDLC) talent programs. Specifically, ASD recognized five training programs for their work in preparing San Diegans for entry-level lab technician roles and placed 45 interns at 23 companies where they worked nearly 7,150 hours. EDC also played a major role in the Southern Border’s successful proposal for $18 million from the state of CA over the next four years to develop and strengthen career pathways. Further, SDLC developed new tools to assist employers in telling San Diego’s innovation story, including a brand anthem on the region’s Life Sciences cluster, a company spotlight on Element Biosciences, and accompanying ad campaigns.
- Welcomed new cohort to MetroConnect VI.
EDC’s international affiliate World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD) welcomed a sixth cohort to its export accelerator program MetroConnect. Underwritten by JPMorgan Chase and Procopio, WTCSD awarded 15 local, small and mid-sized businesses with financial and consultative resources to help them go global. Cohort companies include Nano PharmaSolutions, Trabus Technologies, and more.
- Supported international exports for small businesses.
Small businesses are the backbone of the regional economy, made stronger by their access to global markets. In support, WTCSD’s Export SBDC directly helped nearly 40 local and international firms with expansion in San Diego, in addition to supplying 452 hours of counseling and hosting 13 workshops.
- Led Mayoral trade mission to the Netherlands.
Together with San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria and 30 business and civic leaders, WTCSD led its first trade mission since 2019. For three whirlwind days across the Netherlands, the delegation explored best practices in urban mobility, infrastructure development and circularity, engineering for City solutions, and more. Key programs were hosted at Qualcomm’s AI Research Lab, ASML’s Veldhoven headquarters, the Port of Rotterdam, Leiden Bio Science Park, and many more.
- Informed regional stakeholders using data.
EDC’s Research Bureau launched several reports and analyses to inform regional decision makers including:
- “Diagnosing the Future: AI and San Diego’s Life Sciences Cluster,” which quantified the economic impact of the region’s Life Sciences cluster and explored the proliferation of artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies being used to diagnose disease and develop drugs, among other lifesaving products and solutions.
- The Downtown Demographics Study on behalf of the Downtown San Diego Partnership, which provided new data on the residential and workforce populations of the city’s urban core, identified areas for growth, opportunities for investment and advocacy, as well as a benchmark for the impacts of COVID-19.
- Other ongoing economic analyses including the Quarterly Economic Snapshot.
- Celebrated coming together again.
With two years of events missed and the words ‘COVID’ and ‘pandemic’ now common nomenclature, EDC was excited to come together again with investors and partners to celebrate the resilience of our community and those making the most significant impacts during the pandemic. EDC welcomed more than 800 attendees at our Annual Dinner at Petco Park, and more than 400 guests at our Summer Bash, among other events. EDC also welcomed new co-chairs for several committees including Dr. Sunny Cooke of MiraCosta College and Kevin Pegels of Illumina to EDC’s Economic Development Committee; Laura Garrett of TaylorMade Golf and Karen Reinhardt of ASML to the HR Forum; and Kim Becker of the San Diego Regional Airport Authority and Rob Douglas of ResMed to the Global Competitiveness Council.
- Re-located and re-branded.
Arguably the most fun of all: This year marked the start of a new chapter in a new home for EDC. As part of our move into UC San Diego’s Park & Market in downtown, EDC debuted a fresh new brand that integrates the vibrancy of our region.
Together with EDC’s nearly 200 investors and you, 2023 will present yet another opportunity to grow talent, quality jobs, and thriving households across the San Diego region. We’re looking forward to it.