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County shows appreciation for local industry

06 September 2014

By Lacy Hampton, Enquirer Journal

A special reception, dinner and banquet took place Thursday night following a lunch and golf tournament earlier in the day as part of the 16th Annual “Hook & Slice” Industry Appreciation Day.

The event was held at the Rolling Hills Country Club at 2722 W. Roosevelt Boulevard.

Following the earlier lunch and golf tournament, the banquet portion of the event featured a dinner and reception, a few words from Dr. Philip L. Dubois, chancellor of UNC Charlotte, the distribution of golf tournament awards and the honoring of the 2014 Economic Development Ambassador.

“This is an opportunity to say thank you. It’s something we take seriously,” Chris Platé, executive director of Monroe-Union County Economic Development said in reference to the purpose of the Industry Appreciation Day.

This year’s golf tournament and banquet had one of the biggest turnouts they’ve had since the event began 16 years ago. Throughout the day, around 170 people participated in the different parts of the event and around 140 people attended the banquet/awards ceremony afterwards, Platé said.

Dubois was the keynote speaker during the banquet and spoke about recent changes and updates involving UNC Charlotte (UNCC) and the school’s connection to Union County.

“I want you to know that we appreciate what you do,” Dubois said to the various industry members in attendance at the banquet.

He commented that a lot of UNCC’s alumni come from Union County and that the various programs offered by industries in and around the county have helped prepare many of their students for future work.

“Demand for UNC Charlotte has reached a new high with over 27,000 students enrolled this fall including 1,700 students from Union County. This includes about 200 transfer students, many coming from South Piedmont Community College. We’ve seen a nearly 8 percent enrollment increase in students from Union County from just last year and they make up nearly 8 percent of our freshman class. Of undergraduate students in the UNC System from Union County, one-third of them attend UNC Charlotte, which is more than double any other UNC campus,” Dubois said in a UNC Charlotte statement.

He also mentioned that he is encouraged by the shared vision of prosperity with Union County and confident that Monroe-Union Economic Development and UNC Charlotte will continue to find new ways to work together towards their common goals.

Clark Goodwin, who has been a part of Monroe-Union County Economic Development since the beginning and was the board’s chairman, was named the 2014 Economic Development Ambassador. Goodwin has since passed away and his wife, Cynthia accepted the award on his behalf.

In addition to Goodwin’s wife, other family members of his also attended the banquet.

“I think it’s wonderful,” Sam Goodwin, Goodwin’s brother said in reference to him being named the 2014 Economic Development Ambassador.

His brother loved the work he did with Monroe-Union Economic Development and worked his fingers to the bone for it, he said.

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