On Nov. 13, the Gulf Coast Workforce Board celebrated 16 years of providing workforce services to the region at its annual meeting and luncheon at Florida State University’s Panama City Campus Holley Center.

At the meeting, Executive Director Kim Bodine reviewed the local workforce system performance over the last year which included:

·         Assisting 1,096 employers recruit and hire workers

·         Serving 60,336 walk ins at the Workforce Center

·         Connecting a total of 4,659 individuals to employment

·         Providing in-demand training and/or employment services to 1,121 adults, dislocated workers, and youth under the Workforce Investment Act

·         Helping 103 families transition from welfare to self sufficiency 

 “We owe our great performance to our hardworking staff, our dedicated volunteer board members and our service providers,” said Bodine.

Service providers for the Gulf Coast board include Bay District Schools, Bay STARS; Haney Workforce Training Center; Friends of the Franklin County Library, TIGERS Program; Gulf Coast State College, Workforce Center; and Royal American Management. Individuals from each of the service providers along with their case manager were recognized for successfully completing their workforce program.

At the meeting the board welcomed new board member Patti Blaylock from Gulf County and also voted on a new slate of officers for 2012-13. Tommy Ward, with Dave Pybus Electric from Bay County, was appointed to serve as chairman of the board.

Other board members elected as 2012-2013 officers include Vice-Chair Bob Swenk (Bay County); Past Chair Ted Mosteller (Franklin County); and executive committee members Ruth Phillips (Gulf County) and Betty Croom (Franklin County)

The Gulf Coast Workforce Board is a public/private partnership chartered by the State of Florida to administer workforce development programs in Bay, Gulf, and Franklin counties. Their mission is to provide leadership, oversight, guidance, and assistance to institutions and agencies delivering training and workforce services in order to meet the economic development and employment needs of Bay, Gulf, and Franklin counties.