The 2015 Quad Cities Regional Vision Summit brought together more than 200 community stakeholders committed to being part of transforming the region for the better. Sam Allen, Deere & Company Chairman and CEO, urged participants to move ahead with an aligned regional action plan discussed at the event. The summit, held Thursday at the iWireless Center, included an update on the developing framework of the Quad Cities Regional Vision plan and insight on next steps to implementation.

Now officially called Q2030: A Regional Action Plan, the initiative calls on the Quad Cities area to unite behind broad strategies to keep and attract talent, ignite quality jobs and company investments, and provide economic opportunities for all.
The idea of a Regional Vision was generated by the Chamber’s Regional Opportunities Council (ROC), but the template was formulated over the last 18 months by hundreds of volunteers. Leading the development of the plan’s specifics is a 59-person Steering Committee consisting of representatives from business, government, education, religious, non-profit and trades sectors. The result of their efforts is the Q2030 Regional Action Plan, a road map of aligned strategies that will enhance the Quad Cities competitiveness for people, jobs and company investments.

Sam Allen, Chairman and CEO of Deere & Company and Co-Chair of the ROC provided the keynote speech at the Summit. "As the Quad Cities moves forward, it is crucial that the region be aligned. Business, community and government leaders must work in one direction that recognizes their common ground and their shared goals,” Allen noted. "The complementary nature of the Regional Vision plan provides the framework for making this happen.”
Allen also endorsed the plan on behalf of Deere & Company and the ROC, which he chairs and whose members have been essential stakeholders in its progress and continued momentum. "We not only support, but commit ourselves to the success of the Quad Cities Regional Vision strategy led by a diverse sector of leaders, with strong Chamber backing, and initiated by my colleagues on the Chamber’s Regional Opportunities Council,” Allen said.
"The Quad Cities is home to our global headquarters, and roughly 8,000 employees,” he added. "We’re committed to joining with community partners like you to build on the area’s strengths and create an environment that embraces opportunities for the Quad Cities to thrive in a global economy.”

The primary purpose of Q2030 is to facilitate the best environment possible for current and future residents to experience enhanced and equitable wealth and have opportunities to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary for the region to thrive in a global economy.

The plan has four key themes:

1. Cool Places – Creating strong, attractive and functional places in which we live, work, experience and play.
2. Creative People – Provide young people and workers with good jobs now and in the future.
3. Connected Region – Come together and help one another in new ways to improve efficiencies, attitudes and perceptions.
4. Prosperous Economy – Use our strengths as a region to retain, attract and create businesses and jobs.

"While there are new ideas that will be included in the action plan,” Rene Gellerman, Sr. Vice President of the Chamber and staff lead for the Regional Vision said. "The Steering Committee is steadfast in their desire to align efforts already underway where possible and tapping into existing community groups and their initiatives to build on their work.”

"By piggybacking on the ongoing efforts such as that of the United Way, Community Foundation, academic institutions, Bi-State Regional Commission, non-profits, our multiple municipalities and many others, the Steering Committee believes we quickly multiply potential, capacity and impact for the region,” Gellerman added.

The Regional Vision Summit brought the existing roster of committed stakeholders together, including its delegates, area mayors and elected officials, to share in the notion that real progress cannot be left up to chance, but will be a collective effort in finding ways to leverage the strengths of the bi-state region, embracing a common mindset and sharing ownership of the Q2030 vision:

"The Quad Cities region is recognized globally in 2030 for growing and attracting talent and businesses, is energized by a diverse and culturally rich community, inspires innovation and embraces lifelong learning.”

Coalescing in August 2014, the Regional Vision plan, now known as Q2030, is a collaborative effort involving more than 165 delegates, 59 steering committee members, and more than 100 ROC investors.

Over the next several months, efforts will be made to coordinate strategies that will support and implement the Q2030 plan. This will involve building an operational structure of public and private partners and also forging new relationships across the full geographic scope of the Quad Cities that will focus on achieving sustainable results. The details of plan will be formally introduced to the public in the summer of 2016; however it can be followed currently online.

The priorities are meant to guide policy, initiatives and community action over the next 5-15 years. They are what Q2030 Tri-chair Steve Bahls, President of Augustana College, calls "a first step to get everybody at a level playing field where we're using the same vocabulary."


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