Economic Development Taskforce


The objective of the Economic Development Taskforce is to promote and support activities that increase the business of BC Chamber members and enhance the economy of Beaver County and the surrounding region.

The Taskforce is led by BC Chamber Vice Chairman, Dennis Nichols, and is comprised of leaders from various segments of the business community including representatives from private industry as well as non-profit organizations.

The Taskforce has several sub-committees including the following:

  • Ambassadors for Economic Development – Hal Martin, Howard Hanna, Chairman
  • Ancillary Business to the Shell Ethane Cracker – Dennis Nichols, BC Chamber, Chairman
  • Freedom Road Improvement – New Business Development – Karen Teams, FNB, Chairwoman
  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation – Jen Cushman, Penn State Beaver, Chairwoman

The sub-committees create specific goals, strategies, and action plans in support of their missions. The intention of the sub-committees is to be focused, goal intensive, and action oriented.

Current goals and activities for the sub-committees are:

  • Ambassadors for Economic Development – working with commercial and industrial real estate professionals in the region to ensure that available business sites are properly listed and up to date in the Pittsburgh Prospector Website, hosted by the Pittsburgh Regional Alliance,  and are readily available to developers and site selectors.
  • Ancillary Business to the Shell Ethane Cracker – investigating and determining potential ancillary business that may be created by the existence of the Shell Cracker facility and promoting the advantages of Beaver County sites to potential new businesses as well as supporting the expansion of existing businesses that may benefit from the Cracker operation.
  • Freedom Road Improvement – New Business Development – evaluating new business potential from the improvement of the Freedom Road corridor and its connection to the Cranberry area and working to support new and existing business growth that may result from the transportation improvement of Freedom Road.
  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation – investigating ways to support entrepreneurship and innovation in new business creation including various facets such as business incubators, business hubs, financial support mechanisms, and aid in infrastructure for new business start-ups.

The Taskforce will address issues on a broad and as needed basis to accomplish its goal of economic development for the Beaver County area and will address government and legislative issues as needed in conjunction with the Chamber’s Legislative Committee. 

Additional sub-committees and other initiatives will be sponsored by the Taskforce from time to time.  The Taskforce is planning a seminar for late August that will discuss “Doing business in the Era of the Shell Ethane Cracker”.  Also the Taskforce is developing a program that will speak to “Financial Support for Business”.  This program is targeted for the fall of 2017.

The Taskforce is further engaged in supporting and leading the expansion and strengthening of the Beaver County Manufacturer’s Association.  Beaver County has a strong history in manufacturing and with the availability of abundant energy resources, transportation capabilities; proximity to substantial markets in the US and Canada, and a labor pool with strong work ethic, Beaver County has the ability to once again be a major and diverse manufacturing center.