Arena Football 1 to headquarter in Tulsa
A new league of football, uniting former AFL, af2 and other indoor football teams, was unveiled today under the unifying banner of Arena Football 1 in the league’s new home – Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Long-serving arena football executive Jerry Kurz was named commissioner of the newly formed league.
“I am extremely pleased and honored to have been asked to help lead Arena Football 1, which is designed by ownership and highly dedicated to delivering the best arena football has to offer while serving as active, valued and integral members of their respective communities,” said Kurz.
Arena Football 1 will be headquartered in Tulsa and will feature a minimum of 16 member teams participating in the 2010 season of play. To date a total of 24 teams have submitted applications for membership, although additional locations and markets will receive consideration for inclusion through Friday, Oct. 9. A final roster of markets/teams and alignment for the inaugural season will be announced in mid October.
Tulsa Metro Chamber President and CEO Mike Neal helped welcome the league at a press conference noting Tulsa’s growing popularity among minor league sports.
“The Arena Football 1 league has picked a great place to call home with Tulsa ranked as one of the top three minor league sports markets in the nation,” said Neal. “And to Tulsa’s benefit, by housing the Arena Football 1’s offices, this region will see a $1.3 million economic impact.”
Additional structural and organizational details involving league scheduling, rules and regulations will be determined in the weeks ahead, with specifics made available once finalized.
The initial 16 teams and their respective markets are: Arizona, Arkansas, Bossier-Shreveport, Central Valley (Fresno, Calif.), Chicago, Iowa, Jacksonville, Kentucky, Milwaukee, Oklahoma City, Orlando, Spokane, Tennessee Valley (Alabama), Tri-Cities Washington, Tulsa and Utah (Salt Lake City).
“Having been involved in the launch of both the Arena Football League and the arenafootball2, our new structure will utilize the best aspects of both leagues,” said Kurz. “The time, effort and thought process expended to create and launch Arena Football 1 has been impressive, and we expect arena football fans both across the country and internationally to be extremely pleased with our new product.”
American Airlines dedicates new hangar
City, state, Chamber and aerospace industry leaders gathered Friday to celebrate the opening of American Airlines’ new 81,400-square-foot wide-body aircraft maintenance hangar at Tulsa International Airport.
The hangar, dedicated as the Carmine J. Romano Center, was one of two Tulsa-area aerospace projects made possible through the state’s Opportunity Fund, an economic development account established in 2007, and Tulsa’s passage of the third-penny sales tax extension in 2006.
“With American Airlines’ new hangar now open for business and with Spirit AeroSystems’ completion of an expansion project in March, we see the results the Oklahoma Opportunity Fund created for two of our region’s valuable existing aerospace companies,” Chamber President and CEO Mike Neal said. “We no longer sit on the sidelines and watch as other metro regions across the nation grow. Today, Oklahoma takes care of its own by investing in two of our lead employers in order to grow jobs.”
Lt. Gov. Jari Askins, Secretary of Commerce Natalie Shirley and Mayor Kathy Taylor were on hand to celebrate the opening and each attributed the success of the project to the collaboration of the public and private sectors and discussed the importance of aerospace to the region.
“This project is an opportunity at the state level to hold Tulsa up as an example to show the world Oklahoma is a leader in the aerospace industry,” Askins said.
American Airlines’ new hangar means the preservation of at least 100 jobs in Tulsa, according to Carmine Romano, senior vice president of maintenance and engineering at American.
"We're committed to keeping maintenance in house, and we’re committed to keeping maintenance right here in Tulsa," Romano said.
The aerospace industry provides more than 13,300 jobs throughout 100 companies in the Tulsa region. Furthermore, aerospace and aviation provide a $4.3 billion impact in total output and collectively a payroll of $1.3 billion annually.
Are you saving yet?
The newest members-only benefit provided by the Tulsa Metro Chamber is helping Chamber members save money on the office supplies they use every day to run a successful business.
Newest member benefit saves on office supplies
A program entered into with Office Depot now allows Tulsa Metro Chamber members the opportunity to participate in the nation's largest office supply discount program.
Step 1: Sign up
Go to www.tulsachamber.com/officedepot and follow the link to the Office Depot portal to create a new account.
• Access to private website for order placement
• Free next-day delivery of in-stock items for orders over $50
• In-store discounts
• Additional discounts based on order size
• No contract or sign-on fees
Step 2: Order supplies
Shop online or in the store to receive great savings on hundreds of supplies used every day.
Step 3: Save money
Besides deep discounts on a core products list, members will also receive:
• Up to 83 percent off 196 key items on your “Best Buy List”
• Up to 10 percent off retail pricing on general catalog items
• Up to 20 percent off technology items through Tech Depot
• Up to 20 percent off copy print items
• Up to 10 percent off promotional products
For questions regarding the sign up process or problems with your account, contact Bobby Bingham at 918.845.5845 or email@example.com.
For more information about Chamber membership, contact Karen Humphrey at 918-560-0250 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tapping talent through internship programs
Small business owners are discovering an upside to the economic downturn: a deeper pool of talent to tap through internship programs. Large employers have slashed the number of internships by around a fifth this year as part of recession-related budget cuts. At the same time, demand for internships is rising among students facing a tight job market where employers are putting a premium on work experience.
Hiring permanent staff can be costlier and riskier right now because of the uncertain economic environment, but business owners can keep expenses in check by employing lower-cost labor, such as interns.
“It’s a good opportunity for small business owners,” says Keith Ashmus, chair of the National Small Business Association. Ashmus, who is also a cofounding partner at Frantz Ward LLP, a law firm in Cleveland, says his firm’s ongoing paid-internship program is attracting higher-caliber candidates as larger firms cut back.
Interns can energize a workplace with their enthusiasm. They can pitch in to support projects that might otherwise languish on a back burner. An internship program can also serve as an effective recruitment ground for future hires.
Setting up an internship program doesn’t require a large investment of time or money. To get the best results, business owners need to find appropriate candidates and screen them to make sure they have the skills needed to get the jobs they want done. Once hired, provide a clear description of duties and give regular feedback, as it should be a learning experience for the intern.
The Chamber offers a workforce attraction initiative called Intern In Tulsa to serve as the connectivity point between students and businesses through a Web site, www.InternInTulsa.com. The Web site is divided into a section for employers and a section for students. Employers can post internship opportunities and have access to an online, all-encompassing guide to hiring and developing interns called HIRE Education. The guide provides sample evaluation forms, development suggestions and a staff’s role in mentoring an intern. Visit www.InternInTulsa.com to learn more or post an internship at your company.
Source: The Wall Street Journal, August 24, 2009