VOICES: Resilience, power of partnership key to 2024 economic success

In the ever-evolving economic landscape of 2023, Ohio stood out as a beacon of resilience, innovation, and strategic growth, ranking #2 in the U.S. for announced deals. This year, JobsOhio, the state’s private economic development corporation, met the challenges head-on and achieved remarkable economic and community development milestones.

JobsOhio’s 2023 journey has created sustainable job opportunities and fostered prosperity in Ohio’s cities and towns. JobsOhio has done this by acting as a trusted partner who keeps promises on the business expansion journey and beyond.

This year’s achievements highlight the power of partnerships and the impact of working together. With a focus on innovation, integrity, and value for all Ohioans, and alongside the JobsOhio Network, JobsOhio has completed approximately 458 projects statewide, each a story of collaboration and shared vision. These projects will create 16,312 new jobs and generate more than $1 billion in new payroll, reflecting the quality and dignity of work in Ohio.

  • Capital Investment: Ohio achieved the second-highest capital investment in history and a 36% increase in various development projects, underscoring Ohio as a prime business destination.
  • Inclusion Grants: With a 74% increase from 2022, these grants have significantly contributed to inclusive economic growth, funding businesses in distressed areas owned by minorities, women, veterans, and people with disabilities.
  • Vibrant Communities: Our community development initiatives saw a 300% increase, emphasizing our commitment to holistic development.
  • Digital Access Expansion: The launch of over 40 new Digital Access Ohio Towers has enhanced statewide digital connectivity.
  • National Recognition: Ohio ranked #1 in the Global Groundwork Index by Site Selection Magazine and #5 in Area Development’s Top States for Doing Business.
  • Megaprojects: The Amazon Web Services and Joby Aviation megaprojects contributed notably to Ohio’s momentum, with Joby supporting The Dayton Development Coalition’s second-highest year in new job commitments.

The Joby Aviation win is historic for the Dayton Region and Ohio, which is why company, state, and local officials announced Orville Wright’s Hawthorn Hill home. The first megaproject for the region attracts a new electric air taxi manufacturing facility at the Dayton International Airport, creating 2,000 new jobs and bringing aircraft manufacturing back to Dayton for the first time in a century.

Further solidifying the Miami Valley as a burgeoning advanced air mobility (AAM) leader was the dedication of the National Advanced Air Mobility Center of Excellence at Springfield- Beckley Municipal Airport, which supports the development of electric vertical takeoff and landing, or eVTOL, vehicles, and other Advanced Air Mobility projects.

Another aerospace investment that celebrated its grand opening last year is the SNC Aviation Innovation and Technology Center, which was attracted to the region partly due to the proximity of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. This is the first large aircraft maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) facility in the Dayton region since the 1940s when Orville Wright was still alive.

Across sector lines in 2023, the DDC and JobsOhio worked with local partners to win 39 projects from companies that committed to creating more than 5,200 new jobs and retaining more than 5,800 jobs in the Dayton Region.

Reflecting on the remarkable strides made in 2023, JobsOhio extends our heartfelt gratitude to everyone who played a role in pushing through a challenging economic climate. The spirit of collaboration combined with characteristic Ohioan resilience and grit have contributed to a solid finish to the year and set the stage for continued growth and success.

In 2024, JobsOhio will roll out new talent initiatives and support the Ohio Future Fund and Innovation Hubs while continuing aggressive business development to maintain Ohio’s economic leadership. Ohio is poised for vibrant growth, and this is Ohio’s time!

J.P. Nauseef is JobsOhio President and CEO of JobsOhio, the state’s private economic development corporation