At today’s Manufacturing-Industries-Maritime luncheon hosted by the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce, local officials kicked off a “major new initiative” aimed at promoting Pierce County as “The Place for Jobs.”

The Place for Jobs coalition is chaired by Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland; Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier; Mark Martinez, Executive Secretary of the Pierce County Building & Construction Trades Council; Bruce Kendall, President & CEO of the Economic Development Council for Tacoma-Pierce County; and Tom Pierson, President & CEO of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber. Together, the newly formed group will work toward promoting the community’s shared values of economic prosperity, environmental protection, social equity and public safety.

“The South Sound has a long history as a vibrant center for people to work, in the manufacturing sector and in other fields. And yet our unemployment rate in Pierce County is nearly 6 percent, higher than in King or Snohomish counties, and we have far too many people commuting out of Pierce County,” said Dammeier at the luncheon, which was held at Phillips Hall at University of Washington Tacoma with over 100 community leaders present.

“This new coalition will help us preserve places to do business and grow, showing that the South Sound is The Place for Jobs. We must have not just a variety of jobs but a healthy environment, robust education and worker training and public safety.”

 “Good things happen in the South Sound when government, business, labor, nonprofits and educators work together toward shared prosperity,” Mayor Strickland said. “We are already a national leader in education, the arts, recreation and quality of life. It's now time to rally around our shared values to attract and create more family-wage jobs for residents from all of our zip codes.”