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Economic Development is . . . (increasing the flow) of capital through the community and reducing its leakage.

The rest of the story

Growing up on a farm near Montour, one of my vivid memories was listening to Paul Harvey’s “The Rest of the Story,” on the radio. It always fascinated me that the stories Paul told with theatrical cadences and dramatic pauses, ended with an ironic twist.  One of Paul’s stories that struck a cord with me was the one about what a guy named Harland had built. Here is Paul’s story:

“Harland had not really felt old until the day the postman brought his first social security check. That day, something within Harland resented, resisted, and exploded. The government was feeling sorry for him. His government said 65 candles on the birthday cake is enough. They sent him a pension check and told him he was “old.” “NUTS,” he said. He got so angry he took the $105 check and started a new business. For the man who got angry that day was Harland Sanders. The late Colonel Harland Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame. And as Paul Harvey said in that smooth baritone voice: “NOW YOU KNOW THE REST OF THE STORY.”

It is Sander’s REST OF THE STORY that is the key to building our economy in Tama County.  $105 pension check along with some anger to create the KFC franchising operation that sold in 1964 for $2 M USD (equal to $15 M today). In 1970 it was sold again to Heubleinfor $285 million. $105 creating $285 M is what makes America great.

But this isn’t about Paul Harvey or what a Colonel from Kentucky built. It’s about taking our ideas and building them into the economy of Tama County.  The first step – WE NEED IDEAS.  To get these ideas “clarified” Tama County Economic Development has created THE 2012 PITCH & BUILD COMPETION.

Ideas to expand your current business or start a new business will compete in various categories. The competition is open to anyone in Tama County. PITCH & BUILD participants will pitch their business idea to a group of business leaders, development experts, and industry professionals.  In return, they will have a unique opportunity to receive constructive feedback on areas such as fundraising, value proposition, business plan, management team, sales/marketing/support and building strategy.

The winners will receive consulting to boost their business and take it to the next level. This may be investment, alternative financing, marketing assistance, leadership and team development, presentation coaching, and operational assistance.

The competition has two stages:

1. Written applications are due Tuesday, August 14 at 5:00 p.m. and may be submitted by email or regular mail to Tama County Economic Development.  1007 Prospect Drive, PO Box 22 Toledo, Iowa 52342  info@tamacountyiowa.org

2. Finalists will be invited to present at the Pitch & Build Finals in Toledo on Tuesday, August 28 at 10:30 a.m. Finalists will have 10 minutes to pitch their idea to a panel of judges.

Top three winner(s) will be announced following a luncheon banquet at the Pitch & Build Finals. At the discretion of the judges there may be more than one winner.

The application consists of a one-page registration, a one-page executive summary and projections for 3 years.  If you need help with developing the plan or completing the application, we at the economic development department can assist you.

So it is time Tama County to roll up our sleeves (with someof Harland’s anger) and BUILD our own REST OF THE STORY. “… Good Day.”

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