WestStar program receives funding of $20,000
Posted: Monday, December 28, 2009 10:40 am
The Messenger 12.28.09
USDA Rural Development recently presented the University of Tennessee at Martin WestStar Leadership program with a $20,000 check in Jackson.
The USDA Rural Enterprise Business Grant will help sustain and grow the WestStar Leadership program.
“UT Martin’s WestStar program has proven itself to be a great investment in the future of West Tennessee communities,” said Bobby Goode, USDA Rural Development state director and WestStar alumnus. “Participants in the program come out energized and effective thanks to the skills learned and contacts made. Best of all, the program alumni continue to make outstanding contributions to local economic and community development in the region.”
WestStar, which celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2009, is the state’s oldest and largest regional leadership development program with more than 550 graduates. The program consists of eight specially designed seminar programs addressing contemporary issues important to the future of West Tennessee. Each seminar takes place over a two-day period from January through May in various locations throughout West Tennessee. Topics vary, year to year, depending on changing events in the region.
Focusing on the challenges and potentials in West Tennessee, WestStar stresses the importance of regional and civic responsibility for progress and prosperity. From sessions about economic development and government to education and tourism, presenters are some of the most knowledgeable people in their fields.
“USDA Rural Development has been a tremendous partner with WestStar for over nine years,” said Charley Deal, WestStar executive director. “When leaders remove the imaginary borders placed around communities and counties and embrace a regional concept, it is a win-win for West Tennessee. USDA Rural Development encourages this type of regional cooperation, and WestStar is proud to be in the forefront of helping to shape the future of West Tennessee.”
For more information on WestStar, call coordinator Vir-ginia Grimes at (731) 881-7298.
USDA Rural Development invests in jobs, businesses, community infrastructure, homeownership and affordable rental housing in rural communities. Last year, Rural Development assisted more than 866,000 Tennessee families and businesses with more than $619 million in financial assistance through affordable loans, loan guarantees and grants. For more information, contact the Union City area office at 885-6480, Ext. 4.