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Business leaders in the Atlantic Area are collaborating to strengthen jobs and job opportunities. The group has created the Cass County Workforce Alignment Committee. The goal of the committee is to strengthen relationships amongst employers in Cass County to help address workforce issues including: employee development, school-to-work programs, training, recruitment, retention, community development and housing opportunities.

“The days of putting an ad in the paper and waiting for people to line up at your door are long gone, Cass County businesses of all types need to collaborate to come up with solutions and strategies that cannot be developed alone,” committee member Jay Edwards, MAHLE Engine Components USA, Inc., said.

“This is the kind of effort local business needs to improve our community’s future,” added Edwards.

The mission of the Cass County Workforce Alignment Committee is to attract, develop and retain a skilled workforce in Cass County. Three goals have been determined to help achieve this mission.

  1. Community development to attract younger and culturally diverse populations to increase the size of the workforce.
  2. Develop the skills of the current and future workforce to meet business needs.
  3. Address community needs to retain workers and families, is the main focus of this committee.

“The goals are big but attainable. We aren’t expecting this to change overnight but it gives the committee and community a map to success,” Ouida Hargens, Executive Director, Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce.

To help reach the goal, objectives and actions steps have been determined and clearly defined by the committee. All of the information is included in the Cass County Workforce Alignment Plan. This plan is posted on

“We welcome community members to the committee that wants to improve workforce in Cass County. The goals and objectives are posted so everyone can understand what it is we want to achieve, “Edwards said.

The Workforce Alignment Committee will meet again on April 28th, 2016 at Noon at the Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce, 102 Chestnut Street. If you are interested in helping or have questions, please contact: Ouida Hargens at 712.243.3017 or [email protected]