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  • Education Committee Wraps Up the School Year

    by Rita McDonald | May 28, 2015

    The Chamber’s Education Committee recently held their final meeting of the 2014-2015 school year on a positive note.

    Members heard an update from School Board Chair Dr. Sharon Gentry about the search for a new director of schools, who will replace outgoing director Dr. Jesse Register. Gentry shared the timeline for the board's interview process; the board's goal is to appoint the next director during their June 23 meeting. She also answered committee members' questions about the qualifications for the ideal candidate. Gentry clearly stated that we need a person with great management skills; someone who exemplifies continuity and follow-up and who could execute the MNPS strategic plan.

    Committee members also heard an update from the education subcommittee, a small group that works with school and city officials to monitor the implementation progress of the recommendations from the Chamber’s annual Education Report Card. The subcommittee was happy to share that report card recommendations are being monitored and action items are in place.

    Education Committee members are volunteer leaders in the Chamber’s multi-year strategy to improve K-12 public schools. Special thanks to committee chair Becky Kantz, The Leading Edge, and subcommittee chair Derrick Free, Lipscomb University, for their leadership this year. ...

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    Category: Education
  • Informational Session Reviews Upcoming TDOT Construction

    by Debby Dale Mason | May 26, 2015

    Originally built in 1968, the I-40 bridges spanning Herman Street, Clinton Street, Jo Johnston Avenue and Charlotte Avenue in downtown Nashville need immediate attention. To address this infrastructure issue, TDOT is planning a $62 million rehabilitation project beginning this June.

    The project is called Fast Fix 8 -- eight, because there are four twin bridges, and fast, because TDOT will make repairs using an innovative process called Accelerated Bridge Construction. Due to the expedited timeline, the construction will be finished in months, instead of years; however, it will require shutting down I-40 completely for short periods of time over 13 weekends, scheduled June 2015 through June 2016. During the 13 weekend closures, I-40 will be shut down from the I-40/I-65 split on the east side to the I-40/I-24 split on the west side. The Demonbreun Street exit will be kept open for westbound traffic only. The detour will be the same for all 13 weekends.

    As part of our commitment to being an informational resource for area businesses, the Chamber will host TDOT officials on Thursday, June 4, for a presentation and Q & A about the Fast Fix 8 project. Register today for this session.
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    Category: Transit
  • Nashville Health Care Council Celebrates Commencement of 2015 Fellows Class

    by Lindsay Chambers | May 26, 2015
    Courtesy of the Nashville Health Care Council

    The Nashville Health Care Council is pleased to announce the commencement of its 2015 Health Care Council Fellows class following an intensive period of rigorous coursework and engaged dialogue on the future direction of the health care industry.

    An annual initiative formed in 2012, Council Fellows is co-led by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, M.D. and Larry Van Horn, associate professor of management and executive director of health affairs at Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management. It provides a rare, highly collaborative experience that leverages real-world knowledge of the industry’s founding experts as well as nationally known figures and leading academic institutions. The class engages participants to better implement business strategies, create value, drive industry growth and effect change.

    “When we started this program, our mission was to create an environment where the top health care minds are able to come together and establish a collaborative vision for creating meaningful change,” said Frist. “In just three years, we are already seeing the impact this program is making on our nation’s health care industry. Executives from across the country recognize Fellows as a unique, highly valuable opportunity to learn, examine and ...

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  • Final NashvilleNext Draft Up For Review

    by Debby Dale Mason | May 26, 2015

    The final draft of NashvilleNext, a 25-year plan to guide our city's growth and development, is now available for public review. The Nashville Area Chamber has participated in the process that includes economic prosperity as a pillar guiding the plan’s implementation.

    Over the last two years, the Chamber has encouraged business involvement in the NashvilleNext process to help shape the plan from the private-sector perspective. Input from the entire community has been crucial to the NashvilleNext process. Sidewalks/walkability, affordable housing, homelessness, congestion and regional mass transit have emerged as primary concerns. 

    To review and comment on the final draft plan, visit, and plan to attend the NashvilleNext public hearing at 3 p.m. Monday, June 15, in the Sonny West Conference Center in Metro’s Howard Office Building, 700 Second Ave. S. The public hearing, part of a special Metro Planning Commission meeting, is the final step before the adoption of NashvilleNext.

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    Category: General
  • Academies of Nashville Awards Recognize Outstanding Public Education

    by Rita McDonald | May 19, 2015
    Last night, the accomplishments of our outstanding public schools, teachers, administrators and business partnerships took center stage at the fifth annual Academies of Nashville Awards, sponsored by Altria, Interior Design Services, Deloitte, Dollar General and the Memorial Foundation. More than 300 educators and business partners attended the awards show to celebrate the progress and success in Metro's 12 zoned high schools and MNPS Virtual School.

    MNPS launched the Academies of Nashville in 2006; the program has been instrumental in improving attendance and graduation rates. Academies programs have developed partnerships with more than 375 area businesses, and those partners have donated in excess of $9.2 million and more than 100,000 volunteer hours to work with students since 2010.

    A committee composed of school district, Nashville Area Chamber and PENCIL Foundation leadership selected nominees for each of the 15 categories. More than 300 educators and business partners voted for a nominee in each category through an online ballot.

    Congratulations to our 2015 winners!

    Academy Partnership of the Year: Media & Communications Partnership Council – Audio Engineering Society and the Academy of Entertainment Communications, Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School

    Academy Partnership of the Year: Marketing & IT Partnership Council – Fifth Third Bank ...

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    Category: Education
  • Celebrating Achievements in Metro Nashville Public Schools

    by Whitney Weeks | May 15, 2015
    According to U.S. News & World Report, the students, faculty and leadership at Hume-Fogg Academic High School and Martin Luther King Jr. Magnet have distinguished themselves above all others in our state. Once again, these Metro schools have been identified as the two highest-performing public high schools in the state, out of the nearly 1,800 public schools in Tennessee.

    In just the last few weeks, Metro Schools also announced with pride the names of the district’s Presidential Scholar and four National Merit Scholars. They tweeted about the 80 Overton High School students who are the first in Tennessee to receive a Seal of Biliteracy award. They shared photographs of beautiful, engaged, proud elementary, middle and high school students participating in the annual district-wide project-based learning fair. And teachers, team leads, counselors, coaches and principals of the year are being lauded, too.

    Recently, much ink and many pixels have been devoted to the topic of public education in our community. The central thesis of these authors – regardless of political persuasion, philosophical camp or income tax bracket – is that more needs to be done in order to ensure a quality educational experience for all 83,000 students enrolled in the ...
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    Category: Education
  • Chamber's International Business Council Welcomes New Japanese Consul-General

    by Lori Odom | May 06, 2015
    The Chamber welcomes Masami Kinefuchi, newly appointed consul-general of Japan, to Nashville! Consul-General Kinefuchi arrived in Music City in late April and has already begun meeting and greeting state and local leadership. He assumes the role held by Motohiko Kato, who was reassigned to the Japanese Embassy in London following two and a half years in Nashville.

    Kinefuchi’s career has spanned multiple posts and positions within Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including high-ranking roles at embassies in Canada, Australia, Pakistan and Egypt. His most recent posting was as assistant vice minister of justice in Tokyo, serving as deputy director-general for the Immigration Bureau.

    Kinefuchi is a graduate of the National Defense Academy of Japan, and holds advanced degrees from the School for Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.

    The Consulate-General of Japan in Nashville has jurisdiction over five states – Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. The office provides consular services to Japanese nationals, as well as cultural and educational outreach, and encourages deeper economic relationships between Japan and the U.S. Japan is Middle Tennessee’s largest foreign investor nation, with approximately 65 companies employing more than 15,000 people. The Chamber's International Business Council looks forward to continuing our close ...

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  • Chamber's Economic Development Efforts Receive National Recognition

    by Courtney Ross | May 04, 2015

    For the third year in a row, Site Selection magazine has named the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce one of the nation’s top economic development groups.

    The list is compiled through the magazine’s tracking of four objective categories: new jobs, new jobs per 10,000 residents, new capital investment and new capital investment per 10,000 residents. Additionally, Site Selection editors rank the creativity of economic development strategies, scope of project activity and project projections vs. actual results.

    The national recognition caps off an outstanding week for economic development in Middle Tennessee. Three companies recently announced plans to expand their existing operations, creating nearly 300 new jobs and investing more than $306 million.
    • Global food manufacturer General Mills plans to expand its current operations in Murfreesboro, investing $250 million and creating 117 new jobs.
    • Auto parts manufacturer Topre America will invest $53.3 million to expand their facility inside Nissan's Smyrna plant.
    • KHS America, a manufacturer and distributor of musical instruments, is investing more than $3 million to expand its Mt. Juliet workforce by about 75 percent.
    I am thankful to have an excellent team of economic development professionals working with our regional partners to attract and retain high-quality jobs in our region....
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  • Member Spotlight - JumpOnIt Mobile Deals

    by Lindsay Chambers | Apr 28, 2015
    Q. Tell me more about JumpOnIt Mobile Deals.
    A: JumpOnIt provides the best deals on things to do, see, eat and buy in Nashville right on your cell phone. Business owners can save money on advertising by reaching thousands of potential customers in the most direct way possible: by text message. Consumers can save money at local businesses in a simple and convenient way. No more clipping coupons and forgetting them at home or paying for a discount -- JumpOnIt is free and accessible directly from your cell phone! Just text "JumpOnNash" to 88678 to join.

    Q: What's your biggest goal for your company in the next year?
    A: Our goal for JumpOnIt as a whole is to have successfully launched in six cities by December, which we are definitely on track to do. But our goal for Nashville specifically is to have more than 20,000 people signed up and to be sending out 8-10 really fantastic offers each week.

    Q: How do you define success?
    A: Success for JumpOnIt means that we are providing great savings to consumers and driving traffic and sales for local businesses. As long as the offers are great, people will be going into businesses ...
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    Category: General
  • Rankings Roundup: Music City Tops the Charts

    by Lindsay Chambers | Apr 23, 2015

    Nashville's quality of life, affordability, job-creation rate and vibrancy have resulted in positive national coverage for our city. Here are a few of our favorite recent rankings.

    America's Friendliest Cities

    Nashville is in the No. 1 spot on Travel + Leisure's America's Friendliest Cities ranking. Music City has long been a favorite destination for Travel + Leisure readers, who have voted the city a top destination for foodies, live music, girlfriend getaways, barbecue, festivals, people-watching and affordability over the past several years.

    Cities Creating the Most Tech Jobs
    With 68 percent tech industry job growth between 2004 and 2014, Nashville comes in at No. 8 in Forbes' survey of cities creating the most tech jobs. The study was based on employment data from the nation’s 52 largest metropolitan statistical areas.

    The 10 Best Markets for First-Time Homebuyers
    With an average down payment of $21,104, Nashville was No. 2 on MSN Money's list of the best markets for first-time homebuyers.

    The 10 Best Places to Live Now
    Men's Journal magazine listed Nashville No. 2 on its list of top 10 "cities where life is good," citing Music City's quality of life, construction boom, thriving tech scene and affordability.
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    Category: General