Vermillion was named Large Community of the Year by Gov. Dennis Daugaard on Tuesday evening in Sioux Falls at the Governor's Economic Development Conference. Mayor Jack Powell, USD President James Abbott, and Vermillion Area Chamber and Development Company (VCDC) President Gerry Tracy accepted the award on behalf of the community. "We greatly appreciate Governor Daugaard's recognition of Vermillion. Our partnership with the Governor's Office of Economic Development has been a key factor in our community’s success," said Tracy.
Vermillion has been successful in achieving economic growth due to partnerships between the City of Vermillion, Clay County, the Vermillion Area Chamber and Development Company (VCDC), the University of South Dakota, Vermillion School District, Governor's Office of Economic Development, as well as with various public and private entities throughout the community.
"Vermillion recognizes that to be successful in this economy, communities have to do more than they have in the past to encourage growth,” said Nate Welch, incoming VCDC executive director. "Vermillion is breaking the mold of traditional economic development by taking a progressive approach toward talent attraction and overall community enhancement, including addressing the city’s housing needs.” The VCDC has broken ground on Bliss Pointe, a new housing development, to offer low to moderately priced lots for new home construction.
In addition to housing and community enhancement, the VCDC is addressing the real estate and workforce training needs of companies, including the construction of a 32,000 square foot office facility to house Eagle Creek Software Services, the development of an IT Academy in partnership with GOED and USD to better prepare new graduates for the workforce, and creation of skilled trades courses in partnership with the Vermillion School District to help meet the needs of local employers.
"This award is not as much about our activities in the past year as it is about the culmination and continuation of our economic development strategy over the past several years," said Steve Howe, outgoing VCDC executive director.