Urban-rural divide on agenda for chamber lunch

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The Wilson Chamber of Commerce’s Public Policy Series kicks off soon with a presentation on the Institute for Emerging Issues.

The first installment in the four-part series will take place from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Feb. 26 at the chamber with a light lunch served. Institute for Emerging Issues Executive Director Leslie Boney will discuss the N.C. State University program designed to bring leaders together to develop solutions to complex issues across the state.

“Wilson has benefited directly from the work of the Institute for Emerging Issues. In 2017, we were selected as a participating community in the InnovateNC initiative borne from IEI,” said Chamber President Ryan Simons. “This cross-community collaborative has allowed leaders in our community to learn from success happening in other places across the state and caused us to be more intentional about how we leverage the innovation taking place in Wilson.”

Boney will touch on the institute’s new Reconnect NC initiative designed to bridge the urban-rural divide.

“This year’s focus of ‘reconnecting’ the rural and urban portions of our state should be of particular interest to our members. Straddling the line between urban and rural, and the Triangle and the East, is part of Wilson’s identity,” Simons said. “We should give special attention to what findings emerge from IEI’s latest form, as they should give us some idea about how to best take advantage of our unique circumstances.”

Visit https://iei.ncsu.edu/reconnectnc/ for more information about the initiative.

With support from The Action Group, the chamber brings in experts on the economy, education and government during four public policy sessions throughout the year to discuss the effect on Wilson businesses. Simons said the events are a great opportunity for Wilson leaders to meet experts and policymakers.

“The support of our members for these types of events is unfailing,” Simons said. “I’m especially thankful that The Action Group is making this event possible, which is yet another example of leadership by a valued chamber member.”

Attendance is free for chamber members with registration required by Friday. Visit www.wilsonncchamber.com for more information and to sign up online.