From the NCERC Executive Director:
I had the good fortune to become the Executive Director of the Nevada County Economic Resource Council in 2014.
The combination of factors present in Nevada County provided far too compelling an economic development opportunity for me to pass up. Our region has unmatched innovative tech companies, abundant outdoor recreation activities, a thriving arts scene and uncompromising small town charm.
Armed with such unusual attributes for a county with only 100,000 residents, charting a grand economic development plan and vision, in conjunction with our board of directors, to become a Global Center of Excellence is more of an exciting adventure, rather than an arduous exercise.
There is overwhelming market data illustrating why the Nevada County Economic Resource Council (NCERC) is pursuing the creation of a Global Center of Excellence in Digital Media, with a special concentration on the exploding Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality (VR/AR) sectors.
San Francisco, Silicon Valley and Los Angeles are becoming increasingly cost prohibitive for many tech companies, entrepreneurial start-ups and families seeking long-term career opportunities and an alternative, more-balanced, lifestyle. Moreover, companies located internationally and in other parts of the U.S. are looking for a northern California presence to access the major urban markets but in a more cost-effective and family-friendly environment.
Our vision at the ERC is to position Nevada County as one of the top 5 Digital Media industry clusters worldwide, leveraging this beautiful, cost-effective Sierra Foothills location that is home to one of the only rural high tech clusters in the U.S.
To achieve our vision, the ERC has 5 main strategic areas of focus:
- Recruiting talent and technology companies within the Digital Media sector to the area via our Royal Welcome Task Force.
- Nurturing start-up innovation via our strategic relationship with the new Green Screen Institute (GSI) which includes co-working and business incubator space, along with an annual VR/AR Accelerator that is coupled with an Accelerator Fund. NCERC has played a key role in “seeding” GSI.
- Building an ongoing tech talent pipeline for employers through the efforts of our Talent Connection Task Force, and the launch of the new Digital Media Tech Training Academy, which will occur in conjunction with multiple education and training institutions.
- Assisting local growth-oriented businesses through our Fab 5 initiative, which organizes local and regional business expertise to help business owners capitalize on business opportunities.
- Promoting the numerous attributes of Nevada County (legacy of video-related technology companies, arts, culture, abundant outdoor recreation, proximity to Lake Tahoe, etc.) to tourists, families, entrepreneurs, SMEs and satellite offices of major corporations through an integrated marketing campaign.
I’m inspired every day by the entrepreneurs, executives, talented employees, elected officials and volunteers who are working together proactively to make this the best place to live and work in the world. Stop by some day and I’d be happy to share with you example after example. Ok… now on to the business of what we are doing!
Nevada County ERC
From the Past Chairperson:
My wife and I were first attracted to the abundance of outdoor recreational activities and a cultural scene reminiscent of our days in Austin. When we arrived, we discovered elements layered on top of a second to none, quality-of-life experience found in Nevada County. We were surrounded with a community of people sophisticated in the ways of modern commerce that had chosen an alternative approach to the high paced, stress filled existence of big city life.
Many of these folks (those still in the work force as well as those that have retired) volunteer their time and experience in making Nevada County a better place to live. The NCERC is fortunate to work with a wealth of highly talented individuals that are examining the various components of our commerce engine to ensure we are progressive and supportive of our business activities.
This effort is being accomplished in concert with the establishment of The Green Screen Institute, which builds on the region’s deep video broadcast and equipment manufacturing industry. Please join my fellow NCERC members in our mission of ensuring that Nevada County continues to be recognized as one of the most economically competitive and culturally diverse rural counties in California.
NCERC Advisory Board